Andre Borschberg Returns to the Hawaiian SkiesFriday 1st April 2016
It’s been nine months since André Borschberg emerged, stiff-legged, from his record-breaking, 117-hour stint aboard Solar Impulse. Not that you’d notice. In his first training flights of 2016, Borschberg appeared completely at home.
“Being back in the cockpit is like meeting a good friend again,” he said after his first morning of training. “I could almost fly with my eyes closed, knowing this airplane so well and so intimately.”
Happily for the ground crew, he didn’t. Here, a couple of our intrepid team on Stromer bicycles:
Solar Impulse rounded out what has been a busy month of flying with three flights on March 31, bringing the grand total of take-offs this year to 12. During a morning visit to the offshore test box, Borschberg carried out a variety of aircraft handling tests, reaching a maximum altitude of 7,200 feet and flying for a total of 1 hour, 43 minutes. He was having such a nice time during the evening session - focused on after-dark take-offs and landings – Lead Mission Engineer Michael Anger, the Capcom for this flight, had to talk him into making a final landing.
Meanwhile, on the ground Bertrand Piccard was also feeling optimistic:
This evening in Hawaii @andreborschberg showed again with @solarimpulse special training how fabulous a pilot he is !— Bertrand PICCARD (@bertrandpiccard) April 1, 2016
With days growing longer and the mid-April start date for mission readiness only a few weeks away, excitement is ramping up amongst members of the team. Next on the agenda is a longer training flight with Bertrand Piccard at the controls, which will take place as soon as there is a good weather window. Wish for sun and subscribe for updates.
Ho'omaika'i'ana (that’s congrats in Hawaiian) Andre! It’s good to see our co-founder back in the Hawaiian skies.
This blog post has been originally published here