Weather forces So­lar Im­pulse to land in Ja­pan

The China Post - - GUIDE POST - BY KEN MORIT­SUGU

A so­lar plane at­tempt­ing to fly around the world with­out a drop of fuel plans to make an un­sched­uled stop Mon­day night in Nagoya, Ja­pan, be­cause of bad weather.

Swiss pi­lot An­dre Borschberg took off from Nan­jing, China, on Sun­day on what was to be the long­est leg of the jour­ney, a six-day, 8,175-kilo­me­ter (5,079-mile) flight to Hawaii.

In­stead, the So­lar Im­pulse 2 will land in Nagoya in cen­tral Ja­pan, or­ga­niz­ers said.

Ja­panese Trans­port Min­istry and Nagoya air­port of­fi­cials con­firmed that they are mak­ing ar­range­ments for an unan­tic­i­pated land­ing at Nagoya Air­port.

Elke Neu­mann, a spokes­woman for the So­lar Im­pulse project, said from Nan­jing that the team first no­ticed the bad weather pat­tern about 36 hours ago.

“We thought we might go through it,” she said. “But be­tween Ja­pan and Hawaii there’s no place to stop.”

The safety of the pi­lot and the plane are a pri­or­ity, and they will likely wait a few days in Ja­pan un­til the weather changes, she said.

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