Exclusive look into the Solar Impulse headquarters

7. juillet 2016

Shortly before its successful trans-Atlantic flight, Solar Impulse opened the doors of its Mission Control Center in Monaco to students at the Enge Cantonal School in Zurich. Beatrice Stoll’s German class, who had won a competition for energy and climate pioneers, enjoyed an in-depth and exclusive tour by three of the mission’s core members.

Exclusive look into the Solar Impulse headquarters

school class 2a2

The students in Beatrice Stoll’s 2a2 class made an impression on the jury of the energy and climate pioneer team with a video presentation of their planned project for a “2000-watt week". The class made such an impression that they were invited by the project team to Monaco and were allowed to visit the heart of the Solar Impulse Mission on the Sunday following the trans-Atlantic flight.

The class was greeted by Niklaus Gerber, Yves-André Fasel and Margret Neuenschwander at the Monaco Control Center directly beside the Harbour of Monaco. At the beginning of the visit, they were introduced to the Solar Impulse Mission and its history. Alongside the technical issues, the students were particularly interested in how things will go after a successful circumnavigation of the globe with Solar Impulse.

Afterwards, the 24 students split up into three groups. Margret Neuenschwander, head of partner management at Solar Impulse, led each group through the Control Center and described the Solar Impulse organisation. Niklaus Gerber, an air traffic controller, presented the model calculations that are generated before every flight based on data collected by meteorologists and flight engineers. Yves-André Fasel gave his group a look into the mission’s diplomatic side, the arrangements with the departure and arrival airports and their air traffic control centres.

After the three-hour visit to the Mission Control Center, the group had the chance to enjoy the afternoon and the European Cup atmosphere before being brought back to Zurich. There, they will begin the implementation of their own project at the start of the 2016/17 school year.

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