Science

Solar-powered plane arrives in Egypt on globe-circling trip

Flying low over haze-covered Pyramids in Giza, an experimental solar-powered airplane arrived on Wednesday in Egypt as part of its globe-circling voyage.

Around-the-world voyage began in March 2015 in Abu Dhabi

Solar Impulse 2 lands in Cairo

6 years ago
Duration 1:18
Plane has 1 more flight to complete journey around globe

Flying low over haze-covered Pyramids in Giza, an experimental solar-powered airplane arrived on Wednesday in Egypt as part of its globe-circling voyage.

The aircraft, Solar Impulse 2, flew out of the Seville airport in Spain on Monday and landed at the Cairo International Airport on Wednesday morning. This leg of the trip had been expected to last about 50 hours and 30 minutes.

The flight, piloted by Swiss man Andre Borschberg, had arrived in Seville on June 23 after an unprecedented three-day flight across the Atlantic.

Andre Borschberg, right, the Swiss pilot of Solar Impulse 2, a solar powered plane, is greeted by fellow pilot and countryman Bertrand Piccard after landing at Cairo Airport after another leg of their globe-circling voyage. (Amr Abdallah Dalsh/Reuters)

The around-the-world voyage began in March 2015 in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates and is due to finish there, too, sometime next week or later.

The wings of Solar Impulse 2, which stretch wider than those of a Boeing 747, are equipped with 17,000 solar cells that power propellers and charge batteries. The plane runs on stored energy at night.

Ideal flight speed is about 45.06 kilometres per hour, although that can double during the day when the sun's rays are strongest.

The solar project, which is estimated to cost more than $100 million US, began in 2002 to highlight the importance of renewable energy and the spirit of innovation.

The airplane's wings are equipped with 17,000 solar cells that power propellers and charge batteries. The plane runs on stored energy at night. (Amr Abdallah Dalsh/Reuters)

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