Solar aircraft passes Statue of Liberty as it completes latest leg of global trip

The Solar Impulse 2 aircraft flew by the Statue of Liberty early Saturday, near the end of the US leg of its bid to circle the globe powered only by the sun. “It’s absolutely incredible,” Swiss pilot Andre Borschberg said as the statue lit up the night below him. “It’s a dream here.” The light, slow-moving aircraft took less than three hours to reach New York’s harbour, after taking off from Lehigh Valley Airport in Pennsylvania shortly before midnight. The next stage is the daunting crossing of the Atlantic, one of the most treacherous legs of the journey.

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Solar Impulse team

Cameras in a boat in New York harbor captured the innovative solar powered aircraft as it flew over the Verrazano Bridge and headed toward the towering Lady Liberty. Ending the US crossing at the Statue of Liberty “is a very strong moment for me”, said Mr Borschberg as he approached New York, calling it a “symbol of the freedom of enterprise, the freedom to innovate”. It was the 14th leg of an east-west journey that began March 9, 2015, in Abu Dhabi, and has taken the aircraft across Asia and the Pacific to the U.S.