JAIPUR: 'Solarimplse,' a solar plane, dubbed a revolutionary project in the field of aviation, will have its first test flight April next year in
Switzerland, an officer associated with the project said.
Besides, the microlight-like plane is scheduled to take off for a round-the-world flight in May 2011, project communication head Phil Mundwiller said.
The pollution-free plane would fly with zero fuel on the strength of solar power both day and night, whose prototype was displayed here as part of the 60th ceremony of India-Switzerland Friendship Treaty.
Phil said two aircraft with the investment of $100m are being designed by a team of 60 engineers. Its commercial production is expected to start by 2011.
There would be a world trip in five legs starting with crossing the US and the Atlantic.
The single-pilot plane is based on innovative techniques in terms of aerodynamics, structure, construction methods and propulsion.
The plane, according to him, aims to demonstrate the "immense potential" of renewable energy by flying day and night using no fuel and creating no pollution.
The undersides of the wings are covered with flexible film and the upper surface with a skin of encapsulated solar cells. It has a 61 metre wingspan for improved aerodynamics.
7 months ago