lundi 30 mars 2015

Solar Impulse 2 end his fifth stage

SolarImpulse - Around the World patch.

March 30, 2015

 Bertrand Piccard landing at Chongqing airport

The piloted by Bertrand Piccard solar plane landed at 1:35 local time (7:35 p.m. Swiss) in Chongqing in central China, after a flight of about twenty hours from Mandalay, Burma.

Solar Impulse has completed two hours early Tuesday the fifth stage of his world tour. Piloted by Bertrand Piccard solar plane landed at 1:35 local time (7:35 p.m. Swiss) in Chongqing in central China, after a flight of about twenty hours from Mandalay, Burma.

Solar Impulse 2  landing at Chongqing airport

Video above: Bertrand Piccard landed in Chongqing Safely! Congratulations on this challenging flight!

The flight was complicated by the wind, which slowed the progress of the solar plane, said the Solar Impulse team on its website. The unit also had to reckon with a defective solar cell.

This problem, which caused a decrease of 2% of the available energy, could not be repaired before the start of Mandalay, lack of time. It is indeed not possible to change a single cell.

Solar plane took off before dawn Monday in the second city of Myanmar for this stage of 1375 km. The aircraft's crew had spent more than a week to wait until weather conditions improve in south-western China to begin one of the most difficult stages of this attempt to circumnavigate the globe.

Mountains and cold

Because of the wind and clouds, Bertrand Piccard had to fly "pretty high above the clouds and mountains," said Bertrand. At over 7300 meters, the Swiss had to wear an oxygen mask during the flight.

Bertrand Piccard has faced extreme cold with temperatures as low as -20 degrees Celsius in the cockpit and the difficulties of flying in mountainous Chinese provinces of Yunnan and Sichuan.

The adventurer also flew over an area isolated from the border area between Burma and China, where intense fighting between rebels of the Chinese Kokang ethnic majority in the Burmese army.

 Solar Impulse 2  landed at Chongqing, staff mounting the protection tent

Step Six postponed

The next step, long about 1200 km, linking Chongqing and Nanjing, in eastern China, near Shanghai. The flight, scheduled for Tuesday, but was postponed due to bad weather, said flight director Raymond Clerc, quoted by the DPA Agency.

This deferral causes organizational problems, but safety comes first. It is not known how much time will have to wait SI2. "We just need to find a new solution to Nanjing," said Mr. Clerc. The latter, however, assured to be "optimistic. Otherwise I would not be part of this team, "he joked.

Image above: Andre Borschberg & Bertrand Piccard, "I can Hardly believe we are in China with SolarImpulse" say Bertrand Piccard.

After Nanjing, SI2 will cross the Pacific toward Hawaii. This will be the most difficult part of the trip. To cross the ocean, the solar plane will stay in the air for five days and five nights. A challenge that will have to renew later while crossing the Atlantic from New York.

A journey of 35,000 kilometers

SI2, left Abu Dhabi on March 9, has to travel 35,000 kilometers in total solar energy alone flying over two oceans. This convolution take five months, including 25 days of actual flight before returning to Abu Dhabi late July / early August.

Scheduled twelve step, around the world is the result of twelve years of research conducted by Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg which in addition to scientific achievement, seek to convey a political message for the promotion of renewable energy.

For more information about Solar Impulse 2 Flight Around the World and follow it live:

Images, Video, Text, Credits: SolarImpulse/ATS/ Aerospace.

Best regards,

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