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A new era for solar-powered flight?

Posted on behalf of Miriam Frankel. The solar-powered plane Solar Impulse has completed a 26-hour test flight, showing that the aircraft can absorb enough energy from the Sun during the day to keep it going all night. (BBC news, the LA Times, Telegraph). The plane reached a height of 8700 metres during the flight, which makes it the highest and longest solar-powered flight ever recorded. The plane, weighing in at about 1500 kg, is driven by four electric motors and propellers, and has a wingspan similar to that of a large commercial jet. It is equipped with batteries that are 


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