Solar Electric Flying
|Source: BAE Systems|
Potential to be Airborne for a Year
British defense giant BAE Systems just unveiled and test flew a solar powered, unmanned aircraft called the PHASA-35. The plane, designed for the military, has the potential, according to BAE, to remain airborne for a year without ever touching down. PHASA stands for Persistent High Altitude Solar Aircraft. It's a unique EV that could usher in a new form of green flying.
One of the many things fascinating about this new solar electric aircraft is the potential uses. BAE says it's an affordable and persistent replacement for satellites. They add it can be used for communications, 5G networks and surveillance. The highly advanced EV can avoid bad weather by soaring into the stratosphere.
The plane was built in collaboration with BAE subsidiary Prismatic that is located in Slovenia. It has a 35 meter wingspan. Incredibly, the EV went from design to flight in less than two years. The plane's maiden flight took place in Australia's outback over the Royal Australian Air Force's Woomera test range. More tests flights are scheduled for this year.