Solar-powered plane completes flight across the Pacific

One of the most important flights across the Pacific Ocean has just concluded, and it just may usher in a new era in air travel. Just before midnight, a solar-powered plane completed a two and a half day flight from Hawaii to Mountain View, California (after a previous flight from Japan to Hawaii), all without using a single drop of fuel. Just before midnight in Mountain View, California’s local time, history was made.

“It’s a new era. It’s not science fiction. It’s today,” Swiss explorer and psychiatrist Bertrand Piccard, who piloted the Solar Impulse 2 told CNN shortly after landing. “It exists and clean technologies can do the impossible.”

It’s not just the Pacific Ocean that Piccard and his co-pilot conquered — rather, the sleek Solar Impulse 2, which boasts the wingspan of a Boeing 747 with the weight of just an SUV, is making its way around the world. And despite using only clean, renewable energy, it’s planning on taking a bit less than Jules Verne’s 80 days. Well — that’s not entirely true. Piccard and co-pilot Andre Borschberg were previously grounded for nine months because their plane’s battery died and the winter months provided insufficient sunlight for the trip. But in terms of actual travel time, they should still do a bit better than the steamers of the 19th century.

The Pacific leg is the ninth of the trip, and the duo is planning on a few more trips before it makes its final landing in Abu Dhabi of the United Arab Emirates. If all goes according to plan, the Solar Impulse 2 will make a couple stop in the Midwest before making its way to New York City in June, where it will make final preparations for its journey across the Atlantic and Mediterranean.

The historic flight has already broken a number of records. In addition to the impressive claim of being 100 percent solar powered, Borschberg previously set the record for the longest continuous solo flight in the world when the team made it from Japan to Hawaii. That flight took four days, 21 hours, and 52 minutes.

So stay tuned, friends. This is one story who’s ending you won’t want to miss.

Emerging Tech

The enormous ‘Flying Bum’ moves toward a commercial design

A prototype of the world's largest aircraft is being retired as the company behind it prepares to build a production model. The new Airlander 10, also known as the "Flying Bum," could be ready for commercial use by 2025.

Is this the first image of a Galaxy S10 being used in real life?

It won't be long now; With 2019 underway, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is almost here. Before it arrives, here's absolutely everything you need to know about all three of Samsung's next flagships.
Movies & TV

Curious about 'Spider-Man: Far From Home'? Here's everything we know so far

Despite some mystery surrounding Spider-Man's future after the events of Avengers: Infinity War, Spider-Man: Far From Home swings into theaters in July 2019. Here's everything we know about the movie so far.
Emerging Tech

Robots can now carry out plutonium production process for space exploration

Plutonium-238 is a crucial component in deep space exploration to the outer reaches of our Solar System. The only problem? We've been running low on our stockpiles. Perhaps until now.
Emerging Tech

Why wait? Here are some CES 2019 gadgets you can buy right now

Companies come to CES to wow us with their cutting edge technology, but only a few products are slated to hit the market right away. Here is our list of the best CES 2019 tech you can buy right now.
Emerging Tech

Drones: New rules could soon allow flights over people and at night

With commercial operators in mind, the U.S. government is looking to loosen restrictions on drone flights with a set of proposals that would allow the machines greater freedom to fly over populated areas and also at night.
Emerging Tech

Yamaha’s new app lets you tune your motorcycle with a smartphone

It used to be that if you wanted to tune your motorcycle’s engine and tweak its performance, you needed specialized tools and even more specialized knowledge. Yamaha’s new Power Tuner app changes that.
Emerging Tech

Short film celebrates New Yorker’s amazing robot costumes

New York City resident Peter Kokis creates stunning robot costumes out of household trash. His designs are huge, heavy, and extremely intricate, and never fail to turn heads when he's out and about.
Emerging Tech

In a first for humankind, China is growing plants on the moon

Having recently landed a probe on the far side of the moon, China announced that it managed to grow the first plant on the moon, too. Here's why that matters for deep space travel.
Emerging Tech

Ford’s sweaty robot bottom can simulate 10 years of seat use in mere days

Ford has developed 'Robutt,' a sweaty robot bottom that's designed to simulate the effects of having a pair of human buttocks sitting on its car seats for thousands of hours. Check it out.
Emerging Tech

CES 2019 recap: All the trends, products, and gadgets you missed

CES 2019 didn’t just give us a taste of the future, it offered a five-course meal. From 8K and Micro LED televisions to smart toilets, the show delivered with all the amazing gadgetry you could ask for. Here’s a look at all the big…
Emerging Tech

Want to know which drones are flying near you? There’s an app for that

Want to know what that mysterious drone buzzing over your head is up to? A new system developed by AirMap, Google Wing, and could soon tell you -- via a map on your phone.
Emerging Tech

A Japanese hotel fires half its robot staff for being bad at their jobs

Japan’s oddball Henn na Hotel has fired half of its 243 robot staff. The reason? Because these labor-saving machines turned out to be causing way more problems than they were solving.
Emerging Tech

CERN plans to build a massive particle collider that dwarfs the LHC

CERN already has the world's biggest particle accelerator. Now it wants a bigger one. Meet the 9 billion euro Future Circular Collider that will allow physicists to extend their study of the universe and matter at the smallest level.