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Solar Powered Flight Around the World

Solar Powered Flight

With Electricity Made by SunPower

On July 26th, 2016, the Solar Impulse 2 made history by becoming the first plane to fly around the world using nothing more than solar energy. When the pilots of the plane, Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg, first decided to attempt this feat, which company did they select to build their photovoltaic panels? Their choice was SunPower, the same manufacturer used by Solaron to provide electricity for your home in Sacramento or the Bay Area.

Why Use SunPower?

To create a solar plane, you need photovoltaic panels that are highly efficient, yet extremely light. Durability is also essential, because you can’t replace a solar panel in mid-flight! SunPower met this challenge by using the same technology they apply in the solar panels we sell and install every day.

How Did They Do It?

Weight reduction for a solar plane is essential. Although the wingspan of the Solar Impulse 2 is the same as an Airbus airliner, its weight is no more than that of a typical SUV. Plus, those huge wings do more than make the plane fly — they also bear the majority of the 17,000 photovoltaic cells. With that many cells, it is extremely important that each one is as light as possible. To meet this challenge, every cell is only 135 microns wide, approximately the width of two human hairs! Yet those cells are able to endure the bending and warping that commonly takes place on wings in flight.

Benefits to Homeowners from Solar Impulse 2

Piccard and Borschberg did not build and fly the Solar Impulse 2 just to make records. They also wanted to promote and advance the same technology offered every day by SunPower and Solaron. As they stated: “Our ambition for Solar Impulse is for the worlds of exploration and innovation to make a contribution to the cause of renewable energies.”

From this project, SunPower gained a number of advantages over its competitors:

  • the practical application of lightweight photovoltaic cells in a demanding environment;
  • maximizing electricity production with a minimum of weight and materials;
  • combining these factors in a durable solar panel.

Although you may never create, or even fly, a solar powered plane, you can still gain the same benefits experienced by the Solar Impulse 2. Solaron technicians are prepared to visit your home, develop a photovoltaic plan and offer you a reasonable quote to provide you and your family with solar energy. Request a visit today by calling Solaron at 916-631-9293 or by contacting us through our online appointment form. We are Solaron — providing energy for life!

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