First Atlantic crossing by solar plane a success; landing in Spain

Madrid (dpa) - A solar-powered plane made history Thursday by becoming the first such aircraft to successfully cross the Atlantic Ocean, the Solar Impulse team announced on Twitter.

"We want to represent the new world, the world of #cleantechs," Pilot Bertrand Piccard posted on Twitter after the plan landed safely in Spain. "The #futureisclean and it starts now!"

The plane, named Solar Impulse 2, completed the flight in 70 hours and landed at Seville's airport. This is the first time a solar plane has ever crossed the Atlantic. The trip took nearly 20 hours less than originally estimated.

The two scientists behind the project, Piccard and Andre Borschberg hope this endeavour will draw attention to the possibilities of using renewable energy sources for a wide variety of things.

The carbon fibre plane has a wingspan of 72 metres. The journey began in March 2015 in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates and has been making sometimes interrupted progress eastward ever since.

Fueled solely by solar energy, the plane was launched from New York on Monday.

Last update: Tue, 28/06/2016 - 17:25

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