Fixed Solar Impulse 2 will go away

After nearly seven months of hiatus in Hawaii – caused by a malfunction – the electric plane Solar Impulse 2 will soon continue its great journey. The new equipment and the team responsible for this project are installed, hoping to prevent a repeat of last year’s situation.

Launched last year around the world’s first electric plane, whose main source of energy is solar panels, may soon be successful. The event started in March last year was discontinued several months later, during the trip from Japan to Hawaii. Although a five-day flight without any break allowed to break the record of flight length and distance traveled this amazing machine, but severely damaged it.

During the inspection in Hawaii, it turned out that the high temperature destroyed the storage batteries generated by the photovoltaic cells covering the wings, so the flight was impossible.

Over the past seven months, the machine was grounded as service work ended, replacing batteries, and installing a new battery stabilization and cooling system.

The 90-minute test flight showed no problems, so at the end of April Solar Impulse 2 will be able to continue the journey. Its first stage will be a four-day flight from Hawaii to the west coast of the United States, and then back to its starting point, Abu Dhabi.

Solar Impulse 2 is an airplane with a wingspan of up to 72 meters, so it is significantly larger than the Boeing 747, however, its weight is only 2300 kg. It was obtained through the use of carbon fiber, as well as the special technology used in racing yachts, which makes the plating three times lighter than paper. The machine is powered by four electric motors, which deliver 17,248 photovoltaic panels of just 135 microns thick, embedded in the wing surface and protected with fluorine copolymer. The energy produced by them is then stored in polymer batteries of a total weight of 633 kg.

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Thanks to this drive the machine has almost unlimited range and moves at an average speed of 50-100 km / h.

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Carmen Coleman

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