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«With each of their great "firsts", the explorers of the last century constantly pushed back the limits of the impossible. Today, the drive to make new discoveries must go on, with the aim of improving the quality of life on our planet.»

Bertrand Piccard

Blog, 2014, Political-Actions, Change-The-World


Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg were just two of the delegation that included 120 Heads of State and Government, and over 800 leaders in business, finance and civil society responding to Ban Ki-moon's invitation. The spirit of the summit resonated around the world, including a gathering of 300,000 supporters in the streets of New York.

The political momentum has gained since the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference in 2009: while previously the delegates only recognized the existence of the problem, the summit in New York saw a more positive and determined commitment to financing low-carbon development and the adoption of clean technologies. Indeed, a fund of $200bn was agreed by a coalition of global leaders.

The only way to motivate people is to demonstrate the existence of solutions, not only to speak about the problem,” said Bertrand Piccard. “It was great to meet so many people acting to change the world,” continued André Borschberg.

The Solar Impulse founders announced Abu Dhabi as the host city, and Masdar as the host partner while standing alongside Didier Burkhalter, President of the Swiss Confederation, His Highness Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs and Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, Chairman of Masdar.

Bertrand and André were pleased to be back in New York just a year after completing their flight across America with Si1, the first generation Solar Impulse airplane. Their record-breaking journey in 2013 visited the cities of San Francisco, Phoenix, Dallas, St. Louis, Cincinnati, Washington and New York. Second generation Si2 will look to make stopovers across the USA as it attempts the first Round-The-World solar flight, commencing in March 2015.

The summit was really a positive time to develop the momentum for meaningful change in developing and adopting clean technologies, of which Solar Impulse is a pioneering example. The first Round-The-World solar flight will be bracketed by the forthcoming summit in Lima, later this year, and the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris at the end of 2015.

Tweet, 2014

Tweet AB successfully landed

Blog, 2014, André-Borschberg


Thein Sein, President of Myanmar, had taken the opportunity to meet the Solar Impulse team and see the second generation aircraft, Si2, during a visit to Switzerland last September. The Burmese President had been very enthusiastic about the possibility of Solar Impulse landing in Myanmar during the upcoming Round-the-World solar flight that will start from Abu Dhabi in 2015.

Swiss Ambassador, Mr Christoph Burgener, organised an informal conference at the Swiss Embassy to explore the opportunity of landing there during the Round-The-World. The meeting was another good opportunity to explore how the message of Solar Impulse could be shared in Myanmar, and spirits were high as the route options were discussed.

André was extremely pleased to share enthusiasm with the delegation from Myanmar: Maung Maung Ohn, Chief Minister of Mandalay, H.E. U Soe Thane, Union Minister, President's Office, H.E. U Nyan Tun Aung, Union Minister for Transport and H.E. U Ye Htut, Union Minister for Information. Schindler's General Manager of Myanmar, Willis Phua, was also able to make a positive contribution through their strong regional presence.

During their visit to Myanmar, André and Gregory Blatt, Solar Impulse Managing Director, visited the revered pilgrimage destination of Mahamuni Buddha Temple. The temple houses one of the five likenesses of the Buddha, and the Solar Impulse delegation were grateful for the warm welcome and hospitality received within this historic setting.

"Solar energy is an incredibly powerful resource for a country like Myanmar," said André Borschberg. "The extended hours of sunshine give a great potential to efficiently supply the electricity network, and solar power is so versatile that it can quickly provide energy into remote areas. Solar Impulse demonstrates that this technology can push the boundaries of what many see as impossible."

The Solar Impulse team is really excited to develop the route for their attempt of the first Round-The-World Flight in 2015. Factors that influence the route include the forecast weather conditions and the status of international air traffic, and so it is important to establish the regional possibilities for flight routing and landings.

Read about the visit of Thein Sein to Switzerland

«Just imagine your energy reserves increasing during flight! To make this dream a reality, we had to make maximum use of every single watt supplied by the sun, storing any surplus in our batteries.»

André Borschberg

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