André Borschberg breaks world record flying 117 hours and 7,200 km without fuel

  • Published by Ozgur Tore

Solar Impulse in Hawaii

Pilot André Borschberg, also co-founder of Solar Impulse with Bertrand Piccard, broke the world records of distance and duration for solar aviation, as well as the world record for the longest solo flight ever, with 117 hours and 52 minutes and around 7,200 km.

Solar Flight attempted since last March by Swiss explorers Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg ended successfully in Hawaii. At the controls of Solar Impulse 2, pilot André Borschberg landed safely in Hawaii after flying 117 hours and 52 minutes over the Pacific Ocean from Japan powered only by the sun.

During a typical 24-hour flight cycle, the pilot rests eight times averaging between 5 and 20 minutes per day. This is possible only at lower altitudes when the oxygen mask is required to be worn. The pilot’s daily intake is 2.4 kg (5.2 lbs) of food, 2.5 l (84.5 oz) of water, and 1 l (33.8 oz) of sports drink per day. His meals include a breakfast, a lunch prepared to be as similar as possible to home-made meals, and snacks including dried fruits and chocolate. The nutritional composition of the food will fluctuate with respect to altitudes and temperatures because the pilots require more energy when flying at higher altitudes – in spite of decreased appetites due to increased elevation. Borschberg performed yoga 30 to 45 minutes a day to stay fit and prevent any potential negative effects of immobility.

"What André has achieved is extraordinary from the perspective of a pilot. But furthermore, he has also led the technical team during the construction of this revolutionary prototype. It is not only a historic first in aviation it is also a historic first for renewable energies.", said Bertrand Piccard, initiator of Solar Impulse, chairman and pilot.

Bertrand Piccard will fly to Phoenix for the next leg of the Round-The-World attempt before the mission continues onward to New York, Europe and Abu Dhabi where it all started.



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