The Solar Impulse Airplane was six years in the making by pilots and promoters, Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg. More than 12,000 solar cells are mounted on the wing to supply renewable solar energy to the 10 horsepower electric motors.
“If an aircraft is able to fly day and night without fuel, propelled solely by solar energy, let no one come and claim that is impossible to do the same thing for motor vehicles, heating and air conditioning systems ,and computers,” Piccard said.
Test flights will begin this year.
I just Gotta Tell Ya
- Airplanes burn over $100 Billion each year in oil base fuels
- It is estimated that the world’s 16,000 commercial air jet aircraft produce 600 million tons of carbon dioxide per year, nearly equal to the amount produced per year by all human activities in Africa
- Experts predict that by 2050, aircraft emissions will account for over 5% of total warming.
- There was a marked decrease in CO2 concentrations in the days succeeding 9/11, when airplanes were grounded.
- If you live within a 6-mile radius to an airport, you are at a higher risk for dying of cancer, according to Ruth Skolvick in her article, Exposing Airports’ Poison Circles, Earth Island Journal, winter 2000-2001.