Solar plane lands: Solar Impulse 2 New York

Published: June 12, 2016

Solar plane lands: Solar Impulse 2 New York, The solar-powered plane Solar Impulse has arrived at New York’s JFK airport after making the short trip from Lehigh Valley in Pennsylvania.

Taking off late on Friday night local time, the aircraft spent a good part of the journey turning around the Statue of Liberty for a photoshoot.

This latest flight marks the completion of the trans-America portion of the quest to circle the globe on no fuel.

Solar Impulse must now prepare for a daunting crossing of the Atlantic.

The plane flew over the Statue of Liberty just after 02:00 local time (06:00 GMT).

As he approached the famous landmark, pilot Andre Borschberg spoke with the BBC via satellite phone.

“The US is a country where you meet a lot of entrepreneurs and pioneers, and so to end our American crossing at the Statue of Liberty – which represents for me the freedom of enterprise and the freedom to innovate that is the spirit you can find in this country – is so symbolic.”

Mr Borschberg’s partner on the Solar Impulse project, Bertrand Piccard, will take over for the Atlantic leg.

Deciding when to cross the ocean will be a tricky decision. The slow-moving, ultra-light plane needs benign winds, and the team concedes that the right conditions may not present themselves for several weeks. “Patience will be the word,” said flight director Raymond Clerc. “I expect the flight to take 3-4 days.”

The team would like to aim for the French capital, Paris, to reference the historic first solo Atlantic plane crossing made by Charles Lindbergh in 1927. But the weather systems may simply not permit this, and take Solar Impulse instead further south, perhaps to Toulouse, or to Seville in Spain.

Solar plane lands: Solar Impulse 2 New York


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