The electric airplane Solar Impulse has completed a 24 hour flight for the first time. This is a major accomplishment for the effort to be the first flight around the world powered entirely by electricity captured by photo voltaic (PV) solar panels.
The solar panels capture enough energy during daylight hours to store an excess amount in batteries so the plane can continue flight in darkness.
The world-circling flight will be conducted by another bigger airplane not yet built. The Solar Impulse is a sub-scale test vehicle. The 24 hour flight was flown by pilot by Andre Borschberg.
Pilotless or Unmanned aircraft have flown before through a day using a similar power system but this is the first on the public record with a human pilot.