Solar plane to set new world record

Solar Impulse, which had its inaugural flight to Paris and Brussels in 2011, will attempt to set a new record for a solar plane, by travelling 2,500km from Switzerland to Morocco.

The Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg solar airplane will complete the trip without using a drop of fuel and by taking just one stop – in Madrid to change pilots.

The trip, designed to coincide with the launch of work in the region of Ouarzazate to construct a 500MW solar power plant, will take place in May or June.

“We didn’t have a moment’s hesitation in accepting the idea of working with Morocco,” André Borschberg, co-founder and CEO of Solar Impulse, said. “This destination corresponds fully with the goals we had set ourselves, in terms of distance and flight duration.”

The Solar Impulse team is using the trip as part of its plans to fly around the world with the solar-powered aircraft in 2014.