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Solar-Powered Airplane Attempts Flight Around the World

The Solar Impulse 2 took off from Abu Dhabi and will attempt to fly around the world with engines fueled by solar panels.
Image: Solar Impulse test flight
The Solar Impulse 2 flies over Abu Dhabi on a test flight on Feb. 26. The solar-powered plane has a wingspan of 236 feet, larger than that of a Boeing 747, but weighs only 4600 pounds, about as much as a family car. More than 17,000 solar cells on the wing power lithium-ion batteries in four electric motors. The airframe makes use of carbon fiber, which is three times lighter than paper, to keep the plane as light as possible.AFP - Getty Images