Solar Impulse, the world’s first attempt to fly around the globe in a solar-powered aircraft, has landed in Hawaii after breaking the record for the longest solo flight in such a machine.
The plane piloted by André Borschberg covered the 7,212 kilometres from Nagoya, Japan to Honolulu in the US in five days and five nights, and will now cross the US mainland before completing its 35,000 kilometre journey in Abu Dhabi in September 2015.
Scientists and food experts at the Nestlé Research Center in Lausanne, Switzerland, spent the last four years working with the two pilots, Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard, to develop meals and snacks for the flight. While flying, the pilots eat 11 meals per day, all researched, developed and supplied by Nestlé – ranging from mushroom risotto and potato gratin to yogurts and breakfast cereals.
The food is designed to supply the pilots with optimal energy and protein during the various legs of the journey, and to help them cope with large variations in temperature and altitude. Customised packaging ensures that food stays fresh for up to three months, without artificial preservatives.
Stefan Catsicas, Chief Technology Officer, Nestlé, said: "Nestlé is excited to be at the forefront of scientific endeavour through our support for Solar Impulse. We share the team’s commitment to science, innovation and sustainability.”
After Solar Impulse completes its journey, Nestlé will consider how to apply the knowledge it has learned, which could be used to develop nutritional programmes for high-altitude sports and expeditions.