A solar powered plane sponsored by Omega watches has been successful in its first international manned flight. The flight from Switzerland to the Belgian capital of Brussels took nearly 13 hours, but importantly used no fuel. The total journey distance was only 340 miles.
With pilot André Borschberg at the controls, the plane Solar Impulse took off at 08h40 from Payerne aerodrome in Switzerland. The aircraft flew toward the French cities of Nancy and Metz, before passing over Luxemburg and finally arriving in Belgium to land on Runway 2 at Brussels Airport.
As the plane is capable of creating more power than it consumes it can recharge itself in-flight and has successfully made night flights relying on its battery power charged during the hours of daylight. However, its lightweight frame and limited power sources mean that it is not able to fly in all conditions and is susceptible to weather conditions.
The Omega watches sponsored aircraft is hoping to visit the Paris International Airshow taking place at Le Bourget just outside the French capital between 20th and 26th June.