Saturday, April 4, 2015

Flying with the sun

Many of you maybe aware of the Solar Impulse planes . Solar Impulse-1 has already flown across Europe and from the east cost to the West Coast of the US. The next version of Solar Impulse , Solar Impulse -2(SI-2) has started its flight, that would encircle the entire world from Abu Dhabi, UAE on 9th March 2015.

It travelled from Abu Dhabi to Muscat, from Muscat(Oman) to Ahmedabad(India) , from Ahmedabad to Varanasi(India) and then to Mandalay(Burma) and is finally at Chongquing(China). The Solar Impulse planes are powered by the Sun. Its wings comprises of solar panels that generates the electricity that fuels the airplane. No other source of energy is used other than solar energy.

In a similar way Google and Facebook plans to use solar drones which are similar to these planes except for the fact that they will be unmanned. They will stay airborne for long periods of time, for months maybe years. 

The drones will be stationed at Stratosphere i.e - 20 kilometres above the surface of the earth. The would be used to beam Internet across the world. According to Google Loons website each drone or balloon(Google originally planned to use atmoshperic  balloons for this project) can provide Internet access to an area of diameter 40 kms. 

This drones will save the cost of lying fibre optic cables which is quite expensive and because of them , we can have access to Internet even in obscure places of the planet. Say in the jungles of Amazon, or in the mountains of Himalayas. 

People can actually stay in these places located far away and difficult to reach but still have access to all the information thanks to availability of affordable Internet. 

The combination of  solar power , Internet access will encourage people to move out of cities and live in more relaxing places that are located closer to nature. 

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