Solar Impulse: Innovation and the Pioneering Spirit

Meet the visiting pilots of the breakthrough solar airplane set to fly around the world—without fuel.

Event Details


swissnex San Francisco
730 Montgomery St., San Francisco, 94111 United States


January 30, 2013 from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm

Solar Impulse is a Swiss solar-powered airplane that will endeavor to fly around the world—without fuel. After achieving the world’s first solar night to day flight in 2010 and the first intercontinental flight connecting Switzerland to Morocco in 2012, a coast-to-coast flight across the United States is planned in the summer of 2013.

In honor of the two visiting pioneers piloting this innovative airplane, Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg, swissnex San Francisco and the Consulate General of Switzerland are pleased to invite you to a reception and briefing on Solar Impulse.

Join them to learn how the Solar Impulse project is making leaps in new materials, energy and weight optimization, even production processes, and how it is setting new milestones in aviation history. All of that while serving as an ambassador of renewable energy.


6:30 pm  doors open
7:00 pm  presentations
8:00 pm  Q&A
8:15 pm  reception, networking
9:30 pm  doors close


Bertrand Piccard, Initiator and President of the Solar Impulse project

Born into a dynasty of explorers and scientists who have conquered the heights and depths of our planet, Bertrand Piccard made the first ever non-stop round-the-world balloon fight. An internationally renowned psychiatrist, aeronaut and lecturer, chairman of the Winds of Hope charitable foundation, and a United Nations goodwill ambassador, he combines science and adventure in order tackle some of the great challenges of our times.

André Borschberg, CEO and co-founder of the Solar Impulse project

An engineer by education and a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in management science, André Borschberg has solid experience in creating and managing companies, as well as in flying. His passion for aviation and his interest in innovative solutions have led him to team up with Bertrand Piccard to direct Solar Impulse and be one of the pilots who will fly right round the world in a solar aircraft.


This event is a project of the U.S.-wide program ThinkSwiss-Brainstorm the Future. As a leading country in science, research, and technology, Switzerland is working with its American counterparts to address key global topics such as sustainability to better understand trends and arrive at solutions.



Photo: Myleen Hollero

Event Photos