ABB India, a supplier of power and automation technology, today announced that it will accompany Solar Impulse 2 and its crew on the aircraft's flight around the world powered only by energy from the sun.
Solar Impulse, based in Switzerland, announced today it will begin its historic flight between late February and early March in Abu Dhabi. In 2014, ABB and Solar Impulse had formed an innovation and technology alliance to advance a shared vision of reducing resource consumption and increasing the use of renewable energy, ABB said in a filing to BSE.
“ABB will be with the Solar Impulse team every mile of its journey,” he said.
Three ABB engineers have joined the Solar Impulse team where they are contributing their expertise and passion. Their work includes improving control systems for ground operations, enhancing the charging electronics for the plane’s battery systems and resolving obstacles that emerge along the route, the company said.
On the plane’s 40,000-kilometre route, pilots Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg will share duties as the aircraft stops in cities including Muscat, Oman; Varanasi and Ahmedabad in India; Chongqing and Nanjing in China; and Phoenix, Arizona in the US. It will stopover in Europe or North Africa.
Among the challenges before the mission concludes in Abu Dhabi in mid-2015 will be a non-stop flight of five days and nights from China to Hawaii. The plane, powered by 17,248 solar cells, will soar higher than Mount Everest each day while fully charging its batteries to stay aloft during the night.
“We are happy that India will have two stops of this historic flight. As India plans to add 100 GW of solar energy by 2020, we do see a significant role for ABB in India,” said ABB India Managing Director Bazmi Husain.