Solvay and Solar Impulse: game-changing clean technologies make the impossible possible!

In July 2016, Solar Impulse, the first-ever zero-emission aircraft powered exclusively by solar energy, landed in Abu Dhabi and completed its world tour. Since the take-off in March 2015, pilots Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg traveled more than 40,000 km, flew across two oceans, and shattered eight world records. We congratulate them on this extraordinary achievement, which marks the successful close of a project that has been 13 years in the making.

We are extremely proud and honored to have been the first technological partner in this visionary and far-flung project over the past decade. From the beginning, the concept of designing, building, and flying a zero-emission aircraft around the world totally aligned with our own unwavering commitment to developing transformative clean technologies that ease the world’s dependency on carbon-emitting fossil fuels.


A fruitful partnership

We also saw this shared journey as yet another chance to demonstrate chemistry’s ability to "make the impossible possible" and we had to be a part of it. Our researchers, chemists and engineers left their marks on the Si1 and Si2 planes which carried more than 6,000 Solvay parts (for a total of 15 products on Si2), which enhanced its lightweight and energy performances. As part of that, we developed clean-sheet solutions that dramatically improve the energy chain and lightning the structure – all crucial elements that made this historic flight a success and that are used today in the transportation industry for cleaner mobility.

Brochure Solar Impulse 2 Products


Solvay continues reinventing progress with the Solar Impulse Foundation through the World Alliance for Efficient Solutions to further develop clean technologies that benefit society and demonstrate how chemistry and innovation bring sustainable and profitable solutions to tackle the world’s environmental and health challenges.

Led by pioneer Bertrand Piccard, the SIF has been the Group’s partner since 2017. Our shared commitment is to work together to develop sustainable solutions to fight climate change by  identifying, selecting and labeling solutions to change the world and improve the quality of life on earth.