Originally published on 1Sun4All.
Solar Impulse 2 (Si2), the world’s first solar-powered plane able to fly day and night without a drop of fuel, says a weather window has been identified and André Borschberg — CEO, cofounder, and pilot of Solar Impulse — will attempt to embark from Nagoya to Hawaii today, 23 June 2015, at 5:30 pm UTC.
After an unexpected landing in Japan, the Swiss aircraft powered by solar energy is very ready to take off for the next flight to Hawaii. The leg from Nagoya, Japan, to Hawaii will be the most difficult flight of the whole Round-The-World mission, as well as an aviation first.
After 12 years of preparation, the Moment of Truth has come. André Borschberg will attempt a challenge that has never been done before: Flying for 5 consecutive days and nights without fuel. Bertrand Piccard — chairman, cofounder, and pilot — will support him from the Mission Control Centre in Monaco.
A historical first: André Borschberg will attempt the longest exploration leg of the Round-The-World mission. The pilot will venture into the unknown, and be exposed to extreme conditions. This flight, an unprecedented feat in the world of aviation, will be the longest flight ever made with a solar airplane in both distance — 7,900 kilometers (4,908 miles) — and duration — 115 hours.
As many of you already know, the Si2 team was obliged to make an intermediate landing in Nagoya, Japan, after the weather window over the Pacific Ocean closed during the flight that departed Nanjing, China, on Saturday, May 31st, 2015. The solar airplane was damaged during the first night on the tarmac in Japan. Watch the video below to learn more about want happened to the wings of Si2.
Si2 and the Solar Impulse team have been on the ground in Nagoya for 22 days waiting for the weather system that will allow the continuation of this historical first. You can watch the video below and see the type of discussions that take place between Bertrand Piccard and the flight team.
Bertrand Piccard says the weather window is a little tight. However, the decision has been taken to take off for the epic Pacific Ocean crossing. He says this is the most difficult decision the Si2 team, the pilots, and MCC have taken. The weather they see now in the projections will change and be different as André Borschberg makes his way across the expanse of the ocean between Japan and the very small islands of Hawaii.
Our thoughts and prayers are with André and the entire Si2 team.
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Photo, Videos and Cartoon Credit: Solar Impulse
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