What’s it like to fly in the icy stratosphere, 25,000 metres above Earth? Swiss eco-adventurer Raphael Domjan hopes to find out soon aboard the SolarStratos plane.
On Friday, his experimental stratospheric solar plane successfully completed its first test flight in Payerne in western Switzerland.
Test flights are set to continue over the coming weeks and months, slowly venturing up to higher altitudes. By the end of next year, the Swiss adventurer and project leader hopes to fly the solar plane up into the stratosphere to 25,000 m above the Earth – three times the height of Mount Everest – which would represent a historical first for a solar plane fitted with electric engines.