Lambert Airport chosen as the final stop for solar powered plane

Lambert Airport chosen as the final stop for solar powered plane

Credit: ABDELHAK SENNA/AFP/GettyImages

Swiss-made Solar-powered aircraft the Solar Impulse piloted by Bertrand Piccard of Switzerland takes off from Rabat on June 21, 2012 for a voyage across the Moroccan desert to Ouarzazate. AFP PHOTO / ABDELHAK SENNA

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by Marie Heart/KMOV.com

KMOV.com

Posted on April 30, 2013 at 7:14 PM

Updated Sunday, Nov 3 at 9:43 PM

 (KMOV) -  Lambert St. Louis International Airport is the final airport chosen as a stop for an upcoming cross country flight of a completely solar-powered plane, the Solar Impulse.

The Solar Impulse Across America flight will depart from San Francisco’s Moffett Field in May, weather permitting. Other stops include Phoenix Sky Harbor, Dallas-Fort Worth, Washington DC-Dulles, and New York’s JFK, where it will conclude its journey. Lambert will be the Midwest stop, arriving around the end of May.

The Solar Impulse is the first airplane capable of flying 24 hours day and night without using a single drop of fuel. The aircraft prototype is made of carbon fiber and has the wingspan of a jumbo jet such as a Boeing 747, but weighs 3,500 lbs., the weight of a small car. It is powered by 12,000 solar cells built into its wings that provide power to four electric motors. Solar cells recharge lithium batteries during the day, allowing the plane to continue its flight at night.

The U.S coast-to-coast crossing will prepare the aircraft for a zero-fuel flight around the world in 2015.

 

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