Solar plane pioneer embarks on journey to help low-carbon innovations take flight

June 27, 2018 by  
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Celebrated Solar Impulse pilot rallies behind new labeling campaign to highlight innovative technologies for energy efficiency, renewables and more.

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Solar plane pioneer embarks on journey to help low-carbon innovations take flight

4 tech startups that are fighting for coastal climate resilience — and winning

June 27, 2018 by  
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These projects are using data and technology to save communities money, resources and lives.

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4 tech startups that are fighting for coastal climate resilience — and winning

How to sustainably manage the transition to shared, autonomous vehicles

June 27, 2018 by  
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Cities are going to change in our automated future — here’s how to build for today, while designing for tomorrow.

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How to sustainably manage the transition to shared, autonomous vehicles

Taking stock: Hermes Investment Management debuts new climate risk tool

June 27, 2018 by  
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The tool is available for Hermes fund managers to assess carbon performance, but eventually will be made public.

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Taking stock: Hermes Investment Management debuts new climate risk tool

Solar Impulse co-founder aims to make electric aviation a reality with new company

April 19, 2017 by  
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Electric high-speed trains have been zipping passengers across Europe and Asia for decades. Now the era of affordable electric cars is beginning with the introduction of the Chevy Bolt and Tesla Model 3. But what about aviation? Could the friendly skies one day join electric trains and cars as an alternative to fossil-fueled transportation, which is polluting the air and contributing to climate change?  Solar Impulse ’s co-founder André Borschberg is aiming to make electric propulsion in the aviation industry a reality with a new company he co-founded, H55 . “Electric air transport will undoubtedly disrupt the aviation industry,” said Borschberg. “15 years ago, when I started with Solar Impulse, electric propulsion was anecdotal. Today it is a major development path of every large aeronautical organisation as well as attracting many start-ups and new players. What is science fiction today will be the reality of tomorrow.” Related: Solar Impulse successfully completes solar-powered flight around the world The Switzerland-based venture will focus on the entire propulsion chain — from the energy source to thrust and power to pilot interface and control systems. H55 has already successfully completed more than 50 hours of flight testing with its electric demonstrator aircraft, aEro1. Borschberg piloted eight of the 17 legs of Solar Impulse 2’s around-the-world flight, including flying for five days and five nights non-stop over the Pacific Ocean — the longest flight ever recorded in a single-pilot airplane. Solar Impulse 2 departed Abu Dhabi in March 2015, returning there in July 2016 after flying around the world (including a nine-month delay for technical repairs). + H55 Images via H55

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Solar Impulse co-founder aims to make electric aviation a reality with new company

Solar Impulse successfully completes solar-powered flight around the world

July 26, 2016 by  
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Today, Solar Impulse 2 completed its epic round-the-world journey, powered only by the sun’s energy. Swiss pilot and initiator Bertrand Piccard landed the experimental solar-powered aircraft in Abu Dhabi after 48 hours in flight from Cairo, Egypt—the 17th and final leg of an adventure that began more than a year ago. Taking turns piloting each leg of the journey, Piccard and SI co-founder André Borschberg have bagged numerous world records and a cumulative 558 hours of flight time to achieve their shared goal, all without burning a single drop of fossil fuel. Solar Impulse 2 took off from Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates on March 9, 2015, embarking on the first-ever solar-powered flight around the world. The pilots took turns, each flying a leg of the journey in the one-man lightweight airplane while the other rested after each arduous flight. Although the journey wasn’t without hiccups, including a months-long layover in Hawaii following a battery failure, the two pilots successfully and safely demonstrated the awesome power of solar energy, while spreading awareness and education along their flight path and, indeed, around the rest of the world. Related: Facebook’s solar-powered drone takes its first flight Ten days after Borschberg landed the 100-percent solar-powered plant in Cairo, Piccard climbed into the cockpit to prepare for the circumnavigation’s final leg. Solar Impulse 2 took off at 1:28am local time July 24, heading for Abu Dhabi . Before takeoff, Piccard shared thoughts about departing the city that marked the beginning and end of his 1999 round-the-world balloon flight. “It’s very emotional to take off from Egypt with SI2…” he said. “It’s precisely here that started my dream of making another circumnavigation, but this time without fuel, only on solar power. I’m excited to come so close to the goal, but unfortunately there are still so many people we have to motivate before having a world running on the same clean technologies.” Solar Impulse 2 landed safely in Abu Dhabi at 4:05 am local time on July 26, with an elapsed flight time of 48 hours and 37 minutes. The plane’s trip around the world took 23 days, covered 43,041 kilometers and set 19 world records (11 of which are pending ratification). Upon landing and exiting the cockpit, Piccard said: “This is not only a first in the history of aviation; it’s before all a first in the history of energy. I’m sure that within 10 years we’ll see electric airplanes transporting 50 passengers on short to medium haul flights. But it’s not enough. The same clean technologies used on Solar Impulse could be implemented on the ground in our daily life to divide by two the CO2 emissions in a profitable way. Solar Impulse is only the beginning, now take it further! ” + Solar Impulse Images via Solar Impulse

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Solar Impulse successfully completes solar-powered flight around the world

Handmade MPavilion will be the largest bamboo structure ever built in Australia

July 26, 2016 by  
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The 282-square-meter MPavilion 2016 designs have a rustic charm owing to its use of plant and earth-based materials. The roof and awning will be made of karvi panels, created from a mix of cow dung and earth, and will be supported by a 2.4-meter-high colonnade of bamboo columns. White lime daub will be applied to waterproof the structure. A 12-meter-tall tazia, an ornamental tower used in Indian ceremonies, will complement the structure and can be seen through the oculus in the suspended ceiling. Related: Amada Levete’s MPavilion is an LED-lit forest canopy that sways in the breeze “I wanted to create a space that connects the entire culture of the land. The tower or ‘tazia’ is an imaginary building that reaches deep into the stars, so it is otherworldly, and through it you can see the stars, the sky, other dimensions,” said Jain. “I want the MPavilion to be the scaffolding that provides a creative space that suspends visitors between earth, ground and sky.” Arup engineers and India-based Kane Construction will help Studio Mumbai oversee engineering and construction. MPavilion will serve as a cultural hub for a series of free talks in the Queen Victoria Gardens from October through February, after which it will be moved to its permanent home within Melbourne’s CBD. The building will take approximately 8 weeks to complete. + Studio Mumbai Images via Studio Mumbai and Nicholas Watt

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Handmade MPavilion will be the largest bamboo structure ever built in Australia

Solar Impulse 2 begins 4-day nonstop flight across the Atlantic on longest day of the year

June 20, 2016 by  
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Solar Impulse 2 celebrated the dawn of summer this morning by lifting off from New York’s Kennedy Airport and heading east. Today marks the beginning of the trans-Atlantic leg of the solar-powered aircraft’s round-the-world journey. Bertrand Piccard will pilot the plane for four days and four nights without using a drop of fuel before landing in Spain, the first European stop along the record-setting route. It’s no coincidence that the team chose the longest day of the year for a flight powered entirely by the sun, as the Solar Impulse mission is focused on showing off the awesome potential of clean energy . So, for today, bring on the sun. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p0DoOJwvlBk With initiator Piccard at the controls, Solar Impulse 2 took off at 6:30am local time from New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport. The pilot will endure a whopping 90 hours of continuous flight time, as the aircraft flies east to its first European destination on the round-the-world trip. Piccard and André Borschberg have taken turns piloting each leg of the journey in the experimental aircraft they developed together, which seats only one person and has a wingspan of just 236 feet. During the day, solar panels on the aircraft soak up the sun’s rays, storing the clean energy in batteries that power the airplane through the night. “André and the team have created more than a revolutionary airplane; they materialized my vision for the future of energy,” said Piccard prior to takeoff this morning. “Lindbergh’s transatlantic flight marked a new area in aviation and contributed to the progress of air transport on a large scale. With Solar Impulse, our aim is to encourage the deployment of clean technologies everywhere. If an airplane can fly day and night without fuel, everybody could use these same efficient solutions in their daily lives.” Solar Impulse 2 departed Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates to begin the global adventure in March 2015. The two pilots have taken turns flying each leg of the journey, all motivated by the desire to illustrate the potential of transportation without fossil fuels. Although the Solar Impulse 2 aircraft is highly experimental and the team has encountered a number of hiccups along the way, such as overheated battery cells in Hawaii which grounded the plane for months, there have been no disastrous failures. So far, the solar-powered aircraft has successfully traveled 18,540 miles of its 25,000 itinerary, which the crew says proves the power of renewable energy . “With this flight over the Atlantic, we are further demonstrating Bertrand’s vision that clean technologies work and can be applied everywhere,” said Borschberg. “We can now make our world more energy efficient. It’s not a question of technology anymore, it’s only a question of mindset: Solar Impulse is like a flying smart grid, and if we can make it work in an airplane, where we can’t cheat, we can make it work on the ground, in our cities, for our homes and for all applications.” As with other legs of the journey, Piccard’s flight is being live broadcasted over Solar Impulse’s website so you can follow along with the adventure. www.solarimpulse.com + Solar Impulse Images via Solar Impulse

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Solar Impulse 2 begins 4-day nonstop flight across the Atlantic on longest day of the year

Solar Impulse 2 is ready to soar with the sun again

March 3, 2016 by  
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Solar Impulse 2 , the solar-powered plane piloted by André Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard, is ready to continue its revolutionary voyage around the world. After the craft was grounded in Hawaii last July due to overheated batteries, it was repaired and upgraded, and a recent initial test flight proved successful. Read the rest of Solar Impulse 2 is ready to soar with the sun again

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Solar Impulse 2 is ready to soar with the sun again

Solar Impulse team floats plan to build solar drones after round-the-world journey

January 13, 2016 by  
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Solar Impulse 2 , the experimental solar-powered airplane, hasn’t even completed its trip around the world, but the team who built it is already thinking about what will happen to the plane, and others like it, in the future. Right now, researchers are conducting a feasibility study for the creation of ‘solar drones’ as a potential replacement for satellites. Ideally, unmanned solar drones could spend up to six months at a time in the sky, doing all the work of current satellite technology and then some, all while using the sun as their only power source. Read the rest of Solar Impulse team floats plan to build solar drones after round-the-world journey

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Solar Impulse team floats plan to build solar drones after round-the-world journey

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