Le Nephelios - Under Construction

Projet Sol'R - The First Solar Powered Skyship

July 30, 2009

MELUN-VILLAROCHE, FRANCE - Members of the Projet Sol'R French development team provided the World Air League with the fun opportunity to review Le Nephelios under construction . Le Nephelios is a 72 feet long one man solar powered skyship. It is intended to push the boundaries of environmental technologies forward by completing a demonstration flight across the English Channel. For power, it is wrapped with flexible solar panels capable of generating 2.4 kilowatts. The electricity generated has 0 carbon emissions and is used to operate its two big red propellers. The outer hull wrap is made from nylon and polyethylene. The pilot sits in a harness and frame made of lightweight high strength composites and aluminum. The craft is estimated at being able to travel at 25mph and should take approximately an hour to cross the English Channel. In terms of man-made aviation technologies and the environment, only flying kites are greener.

Included as supporters of the program are ADEME (the French Environment and Energy Management Agency), Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Lyon, ESSEC (Ecole de Commerce), EPF (Ecole d'Ingénieurs), Ecole Nationale Supérieure d'Arts et Métiers, Ville de Vincennes and the World Air League.

Building the Pilot's Harness and Control Station

From left to right: Thomas Raphaël, Arnaud Vaillant, Arnaud Devie, Pierre-Yves Mazille

Assembling and Testing the Electrical Systems

Construction Hangers at Melun'Villaroche Airport

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