Solar Impulse 2, the plane attempting to fly around the world powered only by solar energy, will land in Honolulu late Thursday night, representatives said.
The plane, which took off from Nagoya, Japan, on Sunday, will land at the Kalaeloa Airport after completing the longest and most dangerous leg of its round-the-world journey, said Solar Impulse 2 sponsor ABB Ltd.
Kathryn Parrish, spokeswoman for ABB, said the plane is expected to land around 11 p.m. Thursday. After landing the plane will be parked at the University of Hawaii hanger.
As of 12 p.m. Hawaii time, the Solar Impulse 2 had finished 67 percent of its journey to Oahu, completing 3,262 miles of the 4,806-mile journey.
Hawaii will be the first of four U.S. destinations for the plane.
The Solar Impulse 2 will take off for Phoenix from Hawaii, then an as-yet-undetermined stop in the Midwest, followed by a landing in New York. If it completes the journey, it will be the first plane to circle the globe on solar power.
The sun is the only source of energy for the aircraft. The plane’s 72-meter wingspan was built with more than 17,000 solar cells, four electric motors and lithium batteries replacing the need for fuel.
Andre Borschberg, CEO of Solar Impulse 2, is piloting the plane alone for the five-day trip.
Borschberg and Solar Impulse 2 team members are live-tweeting the flight by posting updates about Borschberg’s condition and the plane’s status.
On Wednesday afternoon, Borschberg had five of his eight oxygen tanks left, 11 of 18 food rations and 16 of 25 liters of water to help him complete the journey.
The Solar Impulse 2 team provides updates of the plane’s progress at http://www.solarimpulse.com/leg-8-from-Nagoya-to-Hawaii.
Updates from Borschberg are provided on twitter through the pilot’s account @Andreborschberg. The Solar Impulse 2 team updates the plane’s progress through the plane’s account at @solarimpulse.