09/27/2010

Last week was interesting: Solar Impulse and ...

... on that same Tuesday the aircraft of Flight Calibration Services, used for checking the services offered by Skyguide.


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Clearly, the highlight of the week was the arrival, on Tuesday morning, of Solar Impulse. I happened to be near the Meyrin end of the runway just at the right time to see it come in over Meyrin, on the Jura side of the airport. It then turned left when only just past the end of the runway, before coming in to land. This is certainly a trajectory only possible for a slow-moving aircraft.There are various videos available to see this arrival, including quite a nice one on YouTube. I also managed to get a photo while my iPhone still had enough life in the battery!

What is slightly surprising, and a disappointment to amateur plane spotters, is that the transponder used no Solar Impulse does not broadcast its global position coordinates. Thus, its trajectory can only be followed by the use of radar. I assume that there is a good reason (maybe weight, maybe power requirement, maybe a technical reason), but would like to hoe that the next version of the aircraft does have the more modern GPS-equipped transponder.

 

Another interesting aircraft, which (by coincidence, probably) was flying around the airport for all of the week, was the Beech 350 aircraft of Flight Calibration Services. This company is a joint venture by various partners, of whom one is SkyGuide, who operate air traffic control at Geneva and elsewhere. During the week, including just before and just after the arrival of Solar Impulse, this aircraft flew all around the airport. I did the same operation back in April of this year, so we can suppose that it might happen again next year.

Just before another Solar Impulse flight, perhaps.

11:48 Posted in Unusual aircraft | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: solar, impulse, geneva | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

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