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Energy

Solar Plane Breaks Distance Record

by Alex Scott
March 16, 2015 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 93, ISSUE 11

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Credit: Solar Impulse
Solar Impulse 2 flies over Muscat.
09311-buscon-solarcxd1.jpg
Credit: Solar Impulse
Solar Impulse 2 flies over Muscat.

Solar Impulse 2 has broken the distance record for an aircraft powered only with solar energy by flying 912 miles from Muscat, Oman, to Ahmedabad, India. The flight, which took 13 hours and 20 minutes, is the second leg of a planned 12-stop journey that would make Solar Impulse the first solar-powered airplane to circumnavigate Earth. The plane is made of lightweight materials developed by firms such as Solvay and Bayer. The project is the brainchild of Swiss explorer Bertrand Piccard, who wants to show the potential of renewable energy for aviation and beyond.

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