Gallery: Solar Impulse Plane Takes First Successful Flight!

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Fabrice Coffrini

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Fabrice Coffrini

After seven years in the making, the Solar Impulse made its first real flight this morning from an airbase in Switzerland. The solar-powered plane got up to 5,500 ft in altitude and performed test maneuvers in order to see if the plane handled as well as simulations predicted. Everything went perfectly for the first test flight and proved that the plane is capable of taking off and landing. With this important test flight behind them, the Solar Impulse team can push on towards gearing up for their solar powered around-the-world flight in 2012.

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  1. renu kachhi August 6, 2011 at 11:03 pm


  2. Capwhan June 29, 2010 at 11:53 pm


  3. Solar Impulse Gears Up ... June 29, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    […] Solar Impulse, a solar-powered plane that will attempt to circle the globe, for over a year. The single-seat plane took its first successful flight this past April, and now Solar Impulse founder Bertrand Piccard is […]

  4. phodara June 16, 2010 at 10:05 am

    40 hp motor not engine

  5. SheVegas April 7, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    Is it flying off of battery power alrady stored from the solar cells or do the solar cells sustain flight?

    This is pretty cool if real time solar can provide all of the power.

  6. Jean April 7, 2010 at 2:48 pm

    Application: satellite replacement, high altitude automatic solar planes run 24/7. Run on batteries at night while gliding down a little.

    These planes would land only for service.

    Compared to satellites these would be a lot less expensive and would not require any pollution for their launch.

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