Solar Impulse 2 takes flight for Europe
Solar Impulse 2 (SI2)has taken off from New York on the next leg of its around the worldjourney, which will take the zero fuel aircraft across the Atlanticto Europe. The mission has already claimed 8 world records in anattempt to highlight the potential of green technologies that couldhelp protect the environment from mankind's ever-increasingfootprint.
SI2 completed its crossing of the US on June 11 with a flight over the Statue of Liberty before landing at the John F. Kennedy Airport. The 15th leg of the journey was initially scheduled for Sunday, but adverse weatherconditions delayed the effort, forcing the 72 m (236ft) wide aircraftto shelter in Hanger 19 at JKF in the hope offriendlier skies. Compared to previous setbacks sufferedby SI2, the delay was a minor inconvenience, with the Atlantic flightlifting off at 2.30 AM EDT this morning.
The crossing isexpected to take around 90 hours, depending on the ever changingweather conditions prevailing in the Atlantic, and is expected beone of the most challenging legs of the trip for pilot BertrandPiccard to date. He will take his rest in 20 minute stints ashe maintains a near constant vigil, negotiating adverse weatherconditions such as localized rain showers, as well as the invisibleborders that mark out a country's airspace
If all goes well, SI2will touch down in Seville Airport in Spain on June 23. After arriving in Europe, the solar-powered albatross willcontinue to forge a path to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates,where the ambitious endeavor to circumnavigate the globe began inMarch 2015.
A live stream of theAtlantic crossing is available for those interested in following the journey in real time.
Source: Solar Impulse