A solar-powered plane prototype flew over New York on Friday night. The aircraft was tested by a company named Luminati Aerospace LLC. The company allegedly wants to build a fleet of drones that would be able to provide internet access for 4 billion people worldwide. A fleet of internet supplying, constantly hovering drones? Interesting. The plane's name is Solar Impulse 2 and is considered to be the largest solar-powered aircraft on the planet. The plane was flown over Long Island.
CEO of Luminati, Daniel Preston, said: "This is a dream come true. Long Island is known as the Cradle of Aviation, and we want to do our part to keep it here where it belongs."
They spent 20 minutes up in the air controlled by pilots. The end game for the project is to have a fully automated solar-drone that would be able to fly at 60,000 feet, according to Luminati.
Preston is confident that the preliminary tests of these kinds of solar planes will lead to a better understanding of what to do in the future. They want to apply what they have learned to the solar-powered, internet-providing drones.
"I really can't think of any engineering project today that has a greater social impact than bringing communications for many people in the world that don't have it," Preston said.
Check out the video below for the test-flight footage: