Inside the year 1999 history was made when Bertrand Piccard created the very first non-stop journey around the globe inside a hot air balloon. Eleven years later; Piccard is creating history once more as the Co-founder with the Eco-friendly Solar Impulse; that is a Switzerland led solar powered airplane development project. The recently debuted carbon fiber Solar Impulse airplane has officially ushered in a complete new Green era of cutting edge solar powering technologies. The power efficient Solar Impulse airplane triumphantly glided in to the Payerne airfield in Switzerland; making it the first airplane to ever full a 24 hour non-stop flight; fueled only by the organic power of sunlight.
CEO and pilot Andre Borschberg performed the Eco-friendly Solar Impulse test flight; putting to action those advanced energy efficient solar technologies that he, Piccard and their team had developed. The advanced technologies designed into the Green Solar Impulse airplane needed to not only harness and convert the sun’s energy to sustain the airplane during its day-time flight; but also needed to incorporate high performance energy efficient batteries that would convert and store the extra solar energy needed to power its night-time flying hours.
It took seven years of arranging for the team to develop the Eco-friendly Solar Impulse airplane. The solar powered airplane has the wingspan of a Boeing 777 (207 feet) and comes in at concerning the weight of a midsized vehicle. The powered solar airplane is equip with 12,000 solar cells and was designed with a single seat cockpit.
Andre Borschberg, a former Switzerland fighter pilot, took off in the solar powered airplane equipped with an emergency parachute, the plane’s advanced Eco-friendly solar cell technology and a sophisticated energy efficient computerized monitoring system. He was able to effectively navigate the plane through thermal winds and turbulence; all the while enduring freezing night time temperatures. Andre Borschberg prevailed by completing the first successful flight of a fully solar powered airplane; lasting 24 consecutive airborne hours. The energy efficient Green aircraft was able to reach speeds of 75 mph and soared to heights of 28,000 feet. At the end of his Eco-friendly flight; Andre Borschberg brought the historic Solar Impulse airplane in for a graceful touchdown; effectively bringing home a perfect landing for this record-breaking solar plane Green legacy.
Hundreds of cheering Eco-friendly supporters awaited Andre Borschberg landing this cutting edge solar powered airplane; many of which helped to balance the Green airplane upon landing so that it did not tip and scratch up its wings. An unexpected success came from the recorded data that had the airplane ending its flight with more than 20 percent extra solar energy being collected than was originally expected. The onboard advanced computerized system monitored operations and optimized energy efficiency during the flight.
Andre Borschberg had this to say shortly after landing the energy efficient Solar Impulse solar powered airplane: “Everything went very well, it’s really unbelievable,” Andre Borschberg went on to say; “We demonstrated it is feasible to fly day and night; which means this technology can be used to save energy and to produce energy, and that’s exactly what we wanted to show.”
Some of the Solar Impulse airplane’s ongoing primary goals have been to develop advancing energy efficient technologies, develop renewable and sustainable Eco-friendly fueling sources and to build an aircraft designed to only use solar power; all of which is geared towards a successful Green flight around the world. Although this event was only a milestone in the grand scheme of things; the test flight of the Solar Impulse airplane has shown positive and successful possibilities for bringing that ambitious ultimate goal closer to a reality.
This groundbreaking Green technology and advanced design shows tremendous Eco-friendly potential for future sustainable and renewable air travel alternatives. It is with this revolutionizing cutting edge Solar Impulse airplane that we can now see, firsthand, the potential possibilities being inspired by the innovative challenges of transforming, storing and managing solar power. This further encourages the theories that it may indeed be possible for an airplane to fly indefinitely; powered only by energy efficient, sustainable and renewable solar energies.
Excitement and anticipation is already focused on the team’s next solar powered airplane; of which is to be built incorporating all the Green knowledge, data and improved Eco-friendly technologies that made this successful flight possible. Their next and more advanced solar powered airplane is expected to be ready by 2013. It is being specifically designed with high hopes of being able to travel around the world with only five stops along the way.