Two pioneers flying around the world in a solar airplane, to promote clean technologies.
Solar Impulse
August 8, 2015
Happy Saturday BEST Community, 
This week in the Bioenergy and Sustainability School we have chosen the topic of sustainable transportation. As many people know, air travel is one of the most environmentally impacting motives of transportation used today. In fact, a Boeing 747 burns approximately one gallon of fuel every second. With this in mind, the average American contributes 19 tons of CO2 emissions in a year from just driving a motor vehicle. When that same american flies from New York to San Fransisco, that one-way flight has added 3 tons of CO2 to the atmosphere in 5 hours. While these facts have been established, an average of 37.4 million flights happen annually and little has changed when it comes to the environmental impact of these aircrafts. 
Recently, two men by the name of Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg set out to break the stigma of inefficient aircrafts and achieve the impossible. In 2015, the two men along with their Solar Impulse team did more than just break that stigma, they rewrote what we knew about travel as a whole. The Swiss medical doctor and engineer flew round trip from Japan to Hawaii in 5 days and 5 nights with only the use of solar power! Their ambition to prove a point is a major stepping stone in our progression towards sustainable transportation as a whole. Since this flight, many more entrepreneurs and investors have begun to fund the Solar Impulse project with the hope that this technology could be what shapes the future of sustainable transportation.  

Blaze Walsh
Undergraduate Intern
2016 Bio Energy and Sustainability School
Soil and Water Science Department 
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