The Solar Impulse 2 Solar Plane is set for a nonstop flight from China to Hawaii. It will be a 6 day nonstop flight. Due to bad weather the start planned for today has been canceled.
The Solar Impulse 2 solar powered airplane is in the midst of a mission to fly around the world without a drop of fossil fuel. Today it was planned that the Solar Plane would start its most demanding test yet. A 5 to 6 day nonstop flight from China to Hawaii.
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Solar Impulse planned to take off May 25th around 19:00UTC for the first attempt to cross the Pacific ocean, from Nanjing to Hawaii using only solar power. Pilot André Borschberg will fly the zero-fuel airplane on about 8,172km (4412NM) for an estimated time of 6 days and nights.
Right now the Mission engineers in Monaco Mission Control Center are working hard to find the good weather window for a 5 days and nights crossing from Nanjing to Hawaii. Different routes are being analyzed. 4 main conditions have to be fulfilled in order to have a green light for takeoff: optimal energy management, flight time optimization, flight conditions and best takeoff and landing conditions.
The latest news from the solar plane mission is that the start has been called off because of bad weather over the Pacific. There is no new date yet when the solar plane will take on the week long nonstop flight.
The Swiss led around-the-world mission flights take place over 5 months from the beginning of March to the end of July 2015. The Solar Impulse 2 solar airplane around the world flight started in Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirate. The route includes stops in Muscat, Oman; Ahmedabad and Varanasi, India; Mandalay, Myanmar; and Chongqing and Nanjing, China.
After crossing the Pacific Ocean via Hawaii, Si2 will fly across the Continental U.S.A. stopping in three locations – Phoenix, and New York City at JFK. A location in the Midwest will be decided dependent on weather conditions. After crossing the Atlantic, the final legs include a stop-over in Southern Europe or North Africa before arriving back in Abu Dhabi.
The Solar Impulse 2 Solar Plane mission in numbers
- 2 pilots, Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg.
- 1 airplane: Solar Impulse 2
- Zero fuel on board
- A 35,000km (22,000 miles) journey
- 500 flying hours approx.
- 10 legs approx., some lasting more than 5 days and nights
- A 5-month mission (March-August 2015)
- A 60 people support team
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You can follow the solar plane mission live on the Solar Impulse site.