Home Science & Technology Solar Impulse 2 Completes Historic Atlantic Crossing

Solar Impulse 2 Completes Historic Atlantic Crossing

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Spain, completing the Atlantic leg of its historic bid to circumnavigate the globe.

The landing in Seville marked the end of the 15th stage of the solar-powered aircraft’s route.

Pilot Bertrand Piccard made swift progress over the ocean after leaving New York on June 20.

Mission managers will now plot a route to Abu Dhabi where the venture began in March, 2015.

Photo Twitter

Photo Twitter

The project had hoped to end the Atlantic leg in Paris, to echo the pioneering flight in 1927 of Charles Lindbergh.


Charles Lindbergh’s Spirit of St Louis aircraft was the first to make the solo crossing.

As it turned out, the forecast this week in Paris was for storms, and so Seville was therefore chosen as the safest option.

Solar Impulse has moved rapidly around the Earth since renewing its challenge in Hawaii on April 21.

In 2015, the zero-fuel plane flew eight stages from Abu Dhabi to Kalaeloa, including a remarkable four-day, 21-hour leg over the western Pacific – the longest solo flight in aviation history in terms of the time it took.

It was damage to its batteries on that stage that forced Solar Impulse to then lay up for 10 months, for repairs and to wait for optimum daylight length in the northern hemisphere to return.

Solar Impulse is covered in 17,000 photovoltaic cells.

The project is not really intended to be a template for the future of aviation, but rather a demonstration of the capabilities of solar power in general.

Bertrand Piccard shares the flying duties with his business partner, Andre Borschberg.

The former Swiss air force pilot will take charge for the next leg, across the Mediterranean.

Setting off from Seville will be easier than from Paris in this respect, said project team-member Yves Andre Fasel who liaises with air traffic control.

“If we would have arrived in Paris like we wished, it would have been very complicated because we would have had to cross a lot of air traffic controls.

“From Seville, if we go along North Africa, I don’t think there will be a lot of difficulties – from traffic. The difficulties will be more to do with military reasons and things like that.”

James is a professor in Science. His writing skills brought him to BelleNews. He enjoys writing articles for the Science and Technology category. James often finds himself reading about the latest gadgets as the topic is very appealing to him. He likes reading and listening to classical music.