The longest distance ever flown by a solar airplane in aviation history: 13 hours and 20 minutes of flight, reaching an altitude of 8,534 meters with a ground speed of roughly 100 knots. In March 2015 Bertrand Piccard piloted Solar Impulse 2 (Si2) from Muscat (Oman) to Ahmedabad (India), flying across the Arabian Sea and setting a world record for straight distance, pre-declared waypoints record by traveling 1,468 km during Si2’s flight – subject to validation by FAI [Fédération Aéronautique Internationale]; the record of straight distance, pre-declared waypoints 1,386.5 km was previously held by André Borschberg during the Si1 Across America mission in 2013.
“More important to us than the world record is the fact that Solar Impulse 2 is the first solar airplane to fly in Asia. It is also an honor of being welcomed by the state of Gujarat, a visionary state which leads India in terms of solar installation”, said Piccard and Borschberg, the pilots and also the brains behind the project. Solar Impulse’s goal is clear: to inspire innovation and encourage the use of clean technologies. Staring at the sight of this solar plane is certainly intriguing enough to catch people’s imagination. Hard to find a more efficient promotion for renewable energies than flying around the world without fossil fuel. ONE