Solar Impulse 2 Resumes Its Journey Around The World (update – arrives in SF) – Video
The Round-The-World Solar Flight continues as the Solar Impulse 2 with Bertrand Piccard resumed its journey after months of being grounded.
The Solar Impulse 2 had earlier landed in Hawaii in July of 2015, and was stuck there after the plane’s battery system sustained heat damage after leaving Japan.
The Solar-powered aircraft started from Hawaii on Thursday (April 21) and in two days and nights should reach California. (video below)
Update (Saturday April 23rd): Solar Impulse 2 arrived in the San Francisco Bay area late this afternoon, and also performed a fly-by over the Golden Gate Bridge. The trip from Hawaii took some 56 hours of continuous flight over the Pacific Ocean.
If in the area, you can see the Solar Impulse 2 at the Moffett Airfield in Mountain View, California, on 23 April.
“In silence, without using a drop of fuel, but with much wonder in the eyes of hundreds of enchanted supporters, Solar Impulse 2 (Si2) took off early this morning at 6:15am Hawaii time (UTC-10) to complete the crossing of the Pacific. Si2, the solar airplane of Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg, capable of flying day and night powered only by the energy of the sun, will be airborne during Earth Day – a powerful symbol, and is expected to land at the Moffett Airfield in Mountain View, California, on 23 April. The flight, that should take three days depending on weather conditions, will be another challenging leg of the Round-The-World Solar Flight.
Bertrand Piccard took off today from Hawaii to North America – a journey similar to the one of American aviator Amelia Earhart, who set off from Honolulu for the first solo flight to California. Despite the many parallels between these flights, one significant difference remains: while Earhart’s airplane took off carrying more than 500 gallons of gasoline, Si2 flies with no fuel. Across the main wing, fuselage and horizontal stabilizer, 17’248 solar cells power the four lithium batteries, which in turn power the four motors and propellers, allowing Si2 to fly through the night towards the next dawn.”
Bertrand Piccard, Initiator and Chairman of Solar Impulse, currently at the controls of the solar airplane said:
“During my round the world balloon flight in 1999, the seven days I spent over the Pacific were the most nerve-wrecking and thrilling. With Solar Impulse the flight should last for three days, but this time I am alone in the cockpit, so the intensity is no less important. Every morning you have the suspense of knowing how much energy is left in your batteries. Then, with the sunrise comes the virtuous circle of perpetual flight.”
André Borschberg, CEO and Pilot of Solar Impulse said:
“Last year we demonstrated that Solar Impulse is capable of flying five days and five nights non-stop: the airplane, the technologies, the human being. Now what we want to do is continue our flight around the world and demonstrate that these technologies can be used, not only in an airplane, but on the ground. That is why Bertrand initiated the project and I am moved that he will be experiencing full day and night cycles without any fuel.”