Final tests before take-off !
The plane passes the inspection Our solar aircraft is poised for take-off. With all the modifications at last complete, the technical team made an appointment with the Federal Office of Civil Aviation (FOCA) for the mandatory pre-flight inspection and the aircraft was declared in an ‘excellent state of readiness’. The flight safety aspects were approved.... Read more
High altitude flight
High altitude flight, at 26’000 feet, to test oxygen system of our SolarStratos aircraft. Thanks to #GVVN et #Skyguide. #SolarStratos #Suisse #Neuchatel
The wings are ready We are counting the days until we can fly again! The solar cells have been fitted to the wings and the wings are at the base in Payerne and are currently being attached to the plane. It is a matter of time before we can at last prepare for take-off! Jean-François... Read more
Focus on the team
Remote meetings The COVID-19 situation has in no way detracted from the SolarStratos team’s drive and determination to move forward. Work sessions and meetings have shifted to Zoom and planning towards the first flights has continued apace. Raphaël Domjan’s mantra that ‘there is an opportunity in every challenge’ has really resonated during this period as... Read more
High flying batteries!
Powerful batteries Our SolarStratos aircraft will soon be heading for the stratosphere and while the record-breaking flight is the culmination of many human and technological factors, to reach such heights, the plane will also need to be equipped with a 3-blade propeller, an electric motor and 20 kWh lithium-ion batteries. These batteries have their advantages... Read more
Wings for the stratosphere !
Test flights in sight First things first though! Happy New Year from the whole team and welcome to our first newsletter of the new decade! This year is extremely important for SolarStratos and promises to be action packed. The test flights will resume, Raphael will fly the solar plane himself for the first time, we’ll... Read more
Riding the wave for change No one can ignore the challenges currently facing our planet in terms of global warming. More and more voices from around the world are joining the call to action and proposing solutions that can be adopted on a daily basis, and movements are regularly on the march, alerting politicians and... Read more
Testing, testing, testing!
Testing our oxygen system For the medium and high-altitude flights from 6,700 m (22,000 ft), Raphaël Domjan will use a helmet equipped with a fighter pilot mask oxygen supply, developed by test pilot Miguel Iturmendi based on his experience with the Perlan II project. Initial tests will be done out of Colombier airport using a... Read more
We will fly!
The SolarStratos team is confident of flying soon Confidence, assurance, guarantees – these are important words to the SolarStratos team. We always strive to fulfil our promises, however in the experimental environment that we operate in, they are sometimes very difficult words to live up to. On the one hand because we are trying to... Read more
The plane is back!
SolarStratos is back in Payerne The base in Payerne was feeling a bit deserted this summer without the solar aircraft. Now back in pride of place and with all modifications complete, the plane is almost ready to spread its wings again! Speaking of which, those are the only things still remaining to be assembled as... Read more
Raphaël attends Cleantech Week June saw Raphaël Domjan travel to Annecy for International Cleantech Week (19-22 June) where he took on the role of Ambassador of Renewable Energies, spreading the word and promoting solar energy. It was an opportunity for the eco-explorer to participate in a conference dedicated to green innovation and the perfect moment... Read more
Preparation is the key to success
The SolarStratos base: functional and welcoming SolarStratos HQ is located at the heart of the Payerne air base, it is functional, welcoming and well adapted to the needs of our eco-adventure. We can take care of our stratospheric solar aircraft while offering other interesting opportunities. “The base was built in 2015. It houses our plane,... Read more
An ambitious schedule!
Test flights resume in July The countdown has started and Raphael Domjan and the team are watching the clock! They are putting everything they’ve got behind the effort to be ready by July when SolarStratos is scheduled to take off again from the Payerne aerodrome. The summer promises to be busy, in August, Raphael will... Read more
SolarStratos mark 2.0 takes shape
Increased performance As you know, our development programme and test flights were temporarily delayed last autumn due to a breakage during a routine stress test, but in the spirit of SolarStratos, we managed to convert the delay into an opportunity and have used the time to improve and develop. As a result, our new wings... Read more
The heavens call!
Celebrating SolarStratos Our partners are deeply involved in the development of our project and Fischer Connectors has recently given us a very visual example of the excellent support we receive, decorating their St Prex façade in SolarStratos colours. So now, if you take the train from Geneva to Lausanne, keep an eye open for the... Read more
Our solar aircraft keeps evolving
Lighter wings We’ve learned a lot last year, and our project benefits from this knowledge. As a result, SolarStratos’ wings will from now on be equipped with “new generation” winglets, who will help save 10 kilos per wing! This will help reduce the consumption of energy, and therefore the number and volume of batteries needed.... Read more
2018 at a glance
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from the SolarStratos team. May 2019 be full of energy, health and prosperity! And may your personal and professional projects be successful. We thank you for accompanying us throughout the year and supporting our stratospheric adventure. To relive the SolarStratos 2018 highlights, we offer you the below –... Read more
New wings for our next flight Last summer’s technical incident that saw the left wing break during a stress test at the SolarStratos Base in Payerne gave our technical partners and scientists a lot to think about. The last few months have been dedicated to adapting solutions and creating new wings capable of withstanding the... Read more
SolarStratos welcomes the pioneers to Payerne
SolarStratos welcomes the pioneers to Payerne SolarStratos welcomed some of the world’s solar energy pioneers and adventurers to their base in Payerne recently for an evening presentation of the SolarStratos aircraft. The star-studded group included Fred To, inventor of Solar One, Anne Quéméré, sailor, Janice Brown, Marshall Mc Cready and Steven Ptacek of Solar Challenger,... Read more
From legendary aircrafts to record-breaking gliders
Raphaël Domjan meets the Perlan project team During their recent stay in Argentina, Raphaël Domjan and Franck Borrmann, from the SolarStratos technical team, and Raphaëlle Javet, the PlanetSolar Foundation director, had the opportunity to meet the Perlan Mission II team. The meeting in Patagonia was a chance to share and discuss the parallels between the... Read more
Raphaël Domjan meets the Perlan Mission II team
August 2018 – During their recent stay in Argentina, Raphael Domjan, Franck Borrmann from the SolarStratos technical team, and Raphaëlle Javet, the PlanetSolar Foundation director, had the opportunity to meet the Perlan Mission II team. The meeting in Patagonia was a chance to share and discuss the parallels between the two stratospheric projects. The teams... Read more
Technical damage to the SolarStratos aircraft
The SolarStratos stratospheric solar aircraft was damaged this morning during a stress test conducted on land at the team base in Payerne. No human risks were taken and no one was injured. However, the wing was damaged and its repair will cause a delay in the team’s operational schedule. “Our plane is a unique prototype,... Read more
An important step for SolarStratos this spring!
Experience the SolarStratos aircraft through the eyes of our test pilot The SolarStratos project has been developing positively since June with regular test flights over La Broye giving the test pilot ample opportunity to get a sense of the behaviour of the solar airplane. The flights also allow for the changes that were made over... Read more
Raphaël Domjan will soon be back in the SolarStratos hot seat
A new round of test flights are underway in Payerne Test flights have resumed at the Payerne base with test pilot, Damian Hischier, at the controls of the solar aircraft. He will hand over to Raphaël Domjan this summer for a first round of take-offs and solo flights at low altitude. During these trials, the... Read more
SolarStratos resumes test flights
Sub 53 degrees Raphaël Domjan recently underwent a fresh round of decompression tests in an altitude chamber with mixed results. Dressed in his Sokol-KV2 solar space suit and approaching 15,000 metres and minus 53 degrees, the stratonaut started to feel the sub freezing temperatures on his right foot. The technical and the medical team, in... Read more
A spacesuit for history
On a mission to Moscow At the time of writing, Raphael Domjan and a few other members of the team are in Russia, at the offices of their partner, Zvezda, where they are testing the solar space suit that Raphael plans to wear for his voyage into the stratosphere. The tests, that simulate a 25,000-metre... Read more
Raphaël : Solar flyer and Godfather
Raphael Domjan and Bertrand Piccard jump for the environment! During the recent International Hot Air Balloon Festival in Chateaux-d’Oex, Raphael Domjan invited Bertrand Piccard to skydive from Pierrick Duvoisin’s eco-hot air balloon. Conditions were ideal with bright sunshine and very little wind for their ascent to 2,000 metres which was over in a matter of... Read more
2018 promises to be an excellent year !
Destination: stratosphere “Learn from yesterday, live for today and hope for tomorrow.” One of the many sayings by Albert Einstein that Raphael Domjan lives by, and which perfectly illustrates the state of mind of the SolarStratos eco-adventure. It is with this famous quote that we kick off our new year and our first newsletter, in... Read more
Happy holidays !
Dear partners, supporters and friends, 2017 has been a rich, fabulous and moving year! We celebrated the maiden flight of our aircraft SolarStratos, developed our solar space suit, travelled to Montreal for the Quebec Northern Solar Festival in Canada and last but not least, finalised our superb base in Payerne, Switzerland. Thanks to you, the... Read more
SolarStratos, an experimental model
The SolarStratos aircraft: an experimental model After a series of test flights, the SolarStratos aircraft will spend the winter months in a computer modeling phase. The engineers are planning both technological improvements and full-scale transformations, focused mainly on rudder and horizontal tail. SolarStratos will spend a few weeks in Berlin during this period, before returning... Read more
Depressurization + gas + a lounge = an Autumn newsletter from SolarStratos
R&D in Moscow At the end of September, we spoke of the tests carried out on Raphaël with the space suit made by our partners Zvezda in Moscow. Testing a space suit isn’t an easy job and it taught us plenty. First, temperature: Raphaël experienced a simulated flight to 13,000 metres at a temperature of... Read more
SolarStratos, a multidimensional adventure
The hot temperatures of the summer months might be moving south, but the mercury continues to soar at the SolarStratos base, particularly for Raphael trussed up in his space suit. We paid Zvezda, our Russian partners in Moscow, a visit this month to test our space suit in a depressurised chamber. Fortunately, Raphael was luckier... Read more
SolarStratos back in action !
The summer holidays are over and the entire team at SolarStratos is back at work. We hope that you enjoyed the warm months and that your batteries are recharged. Ours are! A good thing given how busy our next chapter promises to be! However, before we tell you all about this, let’s recap what happened... Read more
First international trip for SolarStratos declared a huge success
SolarStratos’ first foreign trip to Quebec in Canada in June was declared a huge success! During the first half of the trip, the aircraft was at the heart of the Northern Solar Festival in Montreal and the star attraction for thousands of visitors! To celebrate the closing of this event, the Swiss Consulate organised a... Read more
From Kazakstan to Canada: SolarStratos shines all over the globe
Last Saturday, June 10, the 2017 Expo opened in Astana, capital of Kazakhstan. Visitors of the Swiss Pavilion will be able to discover SolarStratos, which will hold an information stand until September 10. The theme of this first international exhibition in Central Asia is “the energy of the future”. Designed by our new partner Présence... Read more
SolarStratos heads to Canada
There is no respite for the SolarStratos team! There is barely time to savour the success of their maiden flight before they move on to the next phase of the operation! The next step takes the team to Canada in June where SolarStratos will be the guest of honour at the Festival Nordique du Quebec... Read more
First flight for HB-SXA
Our solar airplane, registered as HB-SXA, made his first flight, right after sunrise, on Friday, the 5th of May ! Experience again these intense moments with us by watching our latest StratosTime. It was a magical moment for the whole SolarStratos team, for all our supporters and our fellow followers. To be continued… Raphaël and... Read more
SolarStratos flies at last!
What an incredible adventure! Beads of perspiration gathered on our brows and a cold sweat ran down our backs, but after several weeks of hard work, our labour finally paid off! We got there! SolarStratos flies! On Friday, the 5th of May 2017, our test pilot Damian Hischier took command of the aircraft. The taxiing... Read more
On the home straight before SolarStratos takes flight
We are almost there! After many long months of hard work and intense round trips between Hurlach in Germany – where SolarStratos was built – the CSEM in Neuchatel and Payerne, we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The aircraft will soon be ready to deploy its solar-powered wings! We are... Read more
Getting to know the aircraft in detail
Almost two months have passed since the roll-out of the plane and the emotion and memory of that moment are still very much alive; the unveiling was magical and such a landmark in the life of SolarStratos! The event also had the desired effect on the world’s media: the coverage was incredible with take up... Read more
2016 at a glance
All the pieces of the puzzle are in place: SolarStratos is ready for take-off As the end of the year approaches, it is time for Raphael and the SolarStratos team to take stock; to assess the vitality of the project and set targets and actions for 2017 while reflecting on recent achievements. And there have... Read more
SolarStratos unveiled !
Payerne, Switzerland, 7 December 2016 – Raphael Domjan’s stratospheric solar plane was unveiled this morning in Payerne, Switzerland, to 300 guests, including ambassadors, partners, government representatives and the world’s media. The unique 8.5-metre-long aircraft has a wingspan of 24.8 metres, weighs 450 kilogrammes and is covered with 22m2 of solar panels. It will be the... Read more
Final preparations for the roll-out
The SolarStratos team is in the final stretch ahead of the official presentation of its solar aircraft to the world. November has arrived, and this is the month when the Roll Out will take place. The event will take place on December 7, in the SolarStratos base on the Payerne airfield. By then the aircraft... Read more
SolarStratos is establishing its operational base at the Payerne Aeropole in Switzerland
Raphaël Domjan and the SolarStratos team are bringing their stratospheric project to life with the commencement of construction on their hangar at the Payerne airport Aeropole site in the Canton of Vaud, Switzerland. This operational base for SolarStratos will house the first solar stratospheric plane. The Canton of Vaud, the city of Payerne and the... Read more
Flying in zero gravity and at the edge of space
Within a week period, SolarStratos could get in the skin of an astronaut and of a solar-stratonaute! So many emotions in so few days! SolarStratos in astronaut mode The first memorable experience of the SolarStratos Club was held from August 25 to 27th in Bordeaux, France. The SolarNavigators joined Raphael’s team to live the first... Read more
Unveiling of the 3 axes simulator
That’s it! The 3 axes simulator of SolarStratos was unveiled to the public during the first day of the Numerik Games Festival in Yverdon-les-Bains, Switzerland, with a demonstration of Raphaël Domjan.
CONCOURS FACEBOOK: PRENEZ LES COMMANDES DE SOLARSTRATOS
L’art numérique est à l’honneur au Festival Numerik Games à Yverdon-les-Bains (du 2 au 4 septembre 2016). SolarStratos y sera présent pour montrer pour la première fois au monde son simulateur 3-axes, celui-là même qui servira comme outil d’entraînement aux vols pour les pilotes solaires! Usuellement réservé à ces derniers, le simulateur ouvre exceptionnellement son... Read more
Rock’n’roll meets the stratosphere!
Stratospheric news ! He is the keyboardist of the Rolling Stones. He played with David Gilmour, Eric Clapton and Goerge Harrison. He is co-founder of The Mother Nature Network (www.mnn.com), which is the most visited independent environmental site in the world. Ladies and Gentlemen, we are pleased to annouce Mr. Chuck Leavell as our new Patron!... Read more
Solar Impulse succeeded !
Our country, Switzerland, can be proud. Two World Tour With Solar Energy are Swiss Made! Congratulations Bertrand Piccard, André Borschberg and the whole Solar Impulse Team! Great job! #GoFurtherWithSolarEnergy #FutureIsClean
SolarStratos inside Paris Match !
#SolarStratos inside Paris Match! Let’s get it and read the interview of Raphaël Domjan!
Behind the scenes of SolarStratos
Welcome behind the scenes of SolarStratos! Follow the work and highlights of the team and Raphaël Domjan via our StratosTime, a short video made by Stéphane, our producer and director! This summer we are taking you to Moscow, to our partner Zvezda. Raphaël and Roland went there to test the spacesuit Sokol (“Falcon” in Russian), which... Read more
The postcard that Bertrand Piccard is holding has “solarly” crossed the #Atlantic twice: once westwards with PlanetSolar and once eastwards, recently, with Solar Impulse! Thanks and congrats again, dear solar friends!
Solar Impulse crossed the Atlantic
June 23rd 2016 is a historic day: Solar Impulse just landed on the European soil in #Sevilla after a 70 hours flight from #NewYork. Stratospheric congratulations to Bertrand Piccard, André Borschberg and their team for this magnificient solar achievement! #futureisclean #AtlanticCrossing
From Zvezda with Solar Love
Family portrait with our Moscow friends from #Zvezda preparing with great commitment Raphaël‘s future #spacesuit. More information on #SolarStratos in a single click.
A teaser and a new website to approach the stars
After 2 years of loyal service, the SolarStratos website came under a digital scalpel and completely changed its design. The objective was to give a new user experience, both in terms of navigation and aesthetics. Particular attention was paid to the highlighting of the SolarStratos Club because SolarStratos is not the work of a small... Read more
In May, do what you please: take some altitude
It is an information that we wanted to share for a long time : we managed our first flight into the stratosphere! Saturday, May 7 at 9:45 am, the nacelle of our friends from Swiss Strato has taken off from Châtel-St-Denis with special passengers on board: two photovoltaic cells, a glass of white wine from... Read more
First stratospheric mission for SolarStratos at more than 35’000 meters
Nous avons effectué, le samedi 7 mai 2016, entre 9h45 et 12h, depuis Châtel-St-Denis, leur première mission stratosphérique qui consistait à envoyer, à plus de 35’000 mètres d’altitude, un ballon équipé de deux cellules photovoltaïques et de caméras ainsi qu’un verre de vin et l’ambassadrice suisse Happy Lilly. Le but de la mission était de... Read more
Just the right dimension
What a dynamic atmosphere at our partner PC-Aero in Germany! 3 screens have been mounted on the SolarStratos simulator, whose construction is coming to an end. We look forward to our future test flights with this technological gem! A propos tests on the simulator, we were relieved to see that the test-spacesuit received from our... Read more
Newsletter SolarStratos n°5, March 2016
Как поживаетеi 1 ? We hope you had a good Easter weekend and you enjoy the beginning of Spring, marking the renewal of life. Regarding SolarStratos, days are passing and are not alike. This has happened things during this March! The most exciting moment was our trip to Moscow with Michael Lopez-Alegria, our flight director,... Read more
Spacesuit tests at Zvezda, Moscow
SolarStratos was in Moscow this week with Russian spacesuits experts at Zvezda. It was amazing to wear this impressive “space armor”. Our Flights Director, Michael Lopez Alegria, was with us too! We brought you these incredible images!
Newsletter SolarStratos n°4, February 2016
Dear Partners, Dear Friends, Late David Bowie sang „Starman“ for the first time in 1972. 44 years later, the song continues to resonate around the world, but with particular taste and sound. The author left our world to join the stars on January 10, 2016. Barely a month later, on February 4, our dear godfather... Read more
Newsletter January 2016
Dear Partners, Dear Friends, The year started well for SolarStratos and promises lots of news to share with you! To retain this January: our first altitude flight with an Eco-Light along with Pierrick Duvoisin from CSEM at over 7,000 meters altitude. This flight was a success to the extent that we could test the dynamic... Read more
Edgar Mitchell, 1930 – 2016
C’est avec une immense tristesse que nous avons appris le décès de notre Ami et Parrain, le Dr. Edgar Dean Mitchell. Né le 17 septembre 1930 au Texas, Edgar a rejoint les rangs de la NASA en 1966 en tant qu’astronaute. Avec la mission Apollo 14, il devint le 6ème homme à poser le pied... Read more
Newsletter SolarStratos no 2, December 2015
In Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson wrote that “discretion is of prime importance to succeed in any venture.1” As 2015 draws to a close, I would like to pay tribute to this quotation and its author, as it very much sums up how we have gone about things this year. We have certainly been discreet,... Read more