Solar-powered Aircraft To Be Unveiled Soon in Switzerland

June 16, 2009 at 2:10 am Leave a comment

Solar-powered Aircraft
To Be Unveiled Soon in Switzerland

The Solar Impulse — the world’s first large aircraft to be entirely powered by the sun — will be unveiled June 26 in Switzerland. The prototype airplane will contain 11,628 photovoltaic cells affixed to the Solar Impulse’s extremely long wing, which measures 207 feet. The cells will power four, 220-pound lithium batteries that will each drive a propeller. The founder of the Solar Impulse project, Bertrand Piccard — part of a team that made the first non-stop circumnavigation of the earth in a balloon — says the aircraft will be able to fly as high as 28,000 feet, where uninterrupted sunlight during the

Solar

Solarimpulse.com

day could power the plane day and night. The Solar Impulse, a single-pilot aircraft, will undergo a series of test flights in 2010 with the aim of staying aloft for 36 hours non-stop. The aviation industry is exploring various methods of powering aircraft with renewable energy sources.

Yale Environment 360: Solar-powered Aircraft To Be Unveiled Soon in Switzerland

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