Two and a half days after setting out from Hawaii, pilot Bertrand Piccard made a picture-postcard arrival in California tonight aboard the fuel-free Solar Impulse 2 airplane.
“Thank you for your welcome!” he told well-wishers who gathered at Moffett Airfield in Mountain View, Calif.
The landing at 11:45 p.m. PT was marked by a bit of turbulence, but nothing Piccard couldn’t handle. “The touchdown is a little bit stronger than I would have expected,” he acknowledged.
This week’s 2,400-mile nonstop trek was the second-longest leg of what’s expected to be a 22,000-mile round-the-world flight, the first ever done with a solar-powered aircraft.