It's official: Solar Impulse 2 will resume the historic solar-powered around-the-world journey in the early spring, 2016. A combination of technical issues (damage to the batteries) and the length of days (necessary for energy neutrality to fly night and day) means a 6 month or so pause.
Solar Impulse will resume the journey in 2016 from Honolulu, with a next stop in Phoenix, then the Midwest US, and then New York City, before traveling across the Atlantic Ocean.
The spokesperson for Solar Impulse has reported the following: "During the first ascent on day one of the record-breaking oceanic flight from Nagoya to Hawaii, the battery temperature increased too much due to over insulation of the gondolas. And while the Mission team was monitoring this very closely during the mission leg, there was no way to decrease the temperature for the remaining duration of the flight as each daily cycle requires an ascend to 28’000 feet and descend for energy management issues."
"Irreversible damage to certain parts of the batteries will require repairs which will last several months. In parallel, we will be studying various options for better cooling and heating processes for very long flights. The University of Hawaii with the support of the Department of Transportation will host the airplane in its hanger at Kalaeloa airport. Post maintenance check flights will start in 2016 to test the new battery heating and cooling systems."
Global Chamber is pleased to support the efforts of Solar Impulse, and our seminar with the pilots at their next stop (Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport) has been tentatively scheduled for April 21, 2016. For more information and to make a reservation, click HERE.
In the meantime congratulations to the pilots Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg, and the crew of Solar Impulse 2, for their accomplishments. More to come.
ABOUT SOLAR IMPULSE
Solar Impulse is attempting a historic first of flying around the world only on solar energy, completing 8 legs, covering nearly half of the journey. We will try to complete the first ever round-the-world solar flight in 2016 and this delay will in no way influence the overall objectives of this pioneering endeavor. Visit www.solarimpulse.com.
ABOUT GLOBAL CHAMBER®
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