The lightweight Solar Impulse once flew overnight without using fuel. This summer, engineers are hoping to fly it across the U.S.
The solar-powered plane features a lightweight design, a wingspan of more than 200 feet wide, and weighs less than a typical car. "Every aspect of the plane, from the carbon fiber components to the flight instrumentation, has been designed to save energy."
Designers of the Solar Impulse say it's far from being ready to replace commercial jets, but is a model for how technology and science has evolved. "Major challenges await humanity... their objectives will be less to conquer unknown territories than to preserve the planet from today's threats, in order to sustain and improve our quality of life."
Read more about the Solar Impulse.
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