Press Release Article


Date: Jun 06, 2016
Press Release Number: 93-2016

Landing is prelude to first transatlantic flight without fuel and end of trans-global mission in Abu Dhabi

Circumnavigating the globe on solar energy alone, Solar Impulse 2 (Si2) is scheduled to arrive at John F. Kennedy International Airport at 4 a.m. on Tuesday, June 7, weather permitting, before crossing the Atlantic Ocean to Abu Dhabi on the final leg of its round-the-world journey.

Solar Impulse 2 and its predecessor Solar Impulse I has set world records as the first solar airplane to fly through the night, between two continents and across the United States. Now, it is attempting to become the first around-the-world solar flight.

"We are delighted to welcome Solar Impulse 2 back to JFK Airport. The clean technology exemplified by Si2 demonstrates clearly that renewable energy sources are reliable and capable of helping reduce fossil fuels in air travel,’’ said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye. “This innovative aircraft is proving that continuous flight without fossil fuel is possible. Our agency applauds the work of Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg and the Si2 team.”

Si2, an experimental aircraft, boasts a 236-foot wingspan – greater than that of a Boeing 747. It weighs 2.3 tons, and makes use of 17,248 solar cells. Si2 has achieved a maximum of 117 hours and 52 minutes of flight time with zero fuel consumption, according to its founder.

During the first Solar Impulse journey in 2013, the plane completed its pioneering tour as the first solar-powered aircraft to fly coast to coast, beginning in San Francisco and hopscotching across the nation before landing at JFK.

Piccard and Borschberg began their current journey in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates in March 2015, and its return to Abu Dhabi will mark the culmination of the first solar-powered flight around the world. In 2015, Si2 traveled to Abu Dhabi, India, Myanmar, China and Japan. By June 2015, Si2 had completed the longest leg of its trip from Japan to Hawaii by flying shifts in the single-seat cockpit, before the journey was halted for aircraft repairs and battery replacement.

In April 2016, the Solar Impulse team resumed the flight from Hawaii and then across the continental United States, with JFK scheduled as its final leg in the United States before departure for Europe and Abu Dhabi. In coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration, the plane’s landing is scheduled for 4 a.m. at JFK during non-peak travel hours to minimize inconvenience to commercial passengers.

The Si2 landing and press conference is open to registered media only. Register for the landing via and/or the press conference at Detailed instructions will be given upon registration.

For photos and more information on Solar Impulse 2’s historic flight, please

About Solar Impulse

Swiss pioneers Bertrand Piccard – Initiator and Chairman – and André Borschberg – CEO and Co-Founder – are the pilots and driving force behind Solar Impulse, the first airplane able to fly day and night without a drop of fuel – propelled solely by the sun’s energy.

Si2 is a concentration of clean technologies – a genuine flying laboratory. It is a single-seater aircraft made of carbon fiber that has a 72m / 236ft wingspan (larger than a Boeing 747) for a weight of 2300kg / 5100lb (the equivalent of an empty family car). The 17,248 solar cells built into the wing power the four batteries (38.5kWh per battery) that in turn power the four electric engines (13.5kW / 17.5hp each) and the propellers with renewable energy. The plane is therefore capable of saving a maximum amount of energy during the day and flying throughout the night on batteries. Si2 requires zero fuel and has virtually unlimited autonomy: theoretically, Si2 could fly forever and is only limited by the pilot’s sustainability.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey

Founded in 1921, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey builds, operates, and maintains many of the most important transportation and trade infrastructure assets in the country. The agency’s network of aviation, ground, rail, and seaport facilities is among the busiest in the country, supports more than 550,000 regional jobs, and generates more than $23 billion in annual wages and $80 billion in annual economic activity. The Port Authority also owns and manages the 16-acre World Trade Center site, where construction crews are building the iconic One World Trade Center, which is now the tallest skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere. The Port Authority receives no tax revenue from either the State of New York or New Jersey or from the City of New York. The agency raises the necessary funds for the improvement, construction or acquisition of its facilities primarily on its own credit. For more information, please visit

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