GreenLightWorldFlight – this April and May over the Arctic

Published: 5.4.2013

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GreenLightWorldFlight – this April and May over the Arctic

This year will be another active one for the Slovenian biologist, alpinist, paraglider, pilot, photographer and environmentalist, Lenarčič. After flying over seven continents, 120 national parks, three oceans, crossing the equator six times and meanwhile flying to the Antarctic and over Mount Everest last year, Lenarčič is heading towards a new challenge. Within the framework of GreenLight World Flight, he will fly again in April and May with the extremely light 290 kg airplane, this time over the Arctic and North Pole to Canada, over the Atlantic and back. The flight again contains an important ecological message Think small. Think light. Think green.’

GreenLightWorldFlight – this April and May over the Arctic

This year will be another active one for the Slovenian biologist, alpinist, paraglider, pilot, photographer and environmentalist, Lenarčič. After flying over seven continents, 120 national parks, three oceans, crossing the equator six times and meanwhile flying to the Antarctic and over Mount Everest last year, Lenarčič is heading towards a new challenge. Within the framework of GreenLight World Flight, he will fly again in April and May with the extremely light 290 kg airplane, this time over the Arctic and North Pole to Canada, over the Atlantic and back. The flight again contains an important ecological message `Think small. Think light. Think green.’

The key characteristics of his new path can be summarized in the following way: experienced long distance pilot, biologist, photographer; light, eco-friendly 290 kg aircraft; black carbon detection over the Arctic; North Pole crossing from Europe to Canada; Atlantic crossing via Lindberg route; arctic water aerial images.

In 2004, Lenarčič was the first human to encircle the globe with the Pipistrel ultralight plane Sinus 912. Back then, he flew around 38,000 kilometres, while last year with the modified plane, Virus SW 914, he flew 57,682 kilometres in approximately the same time interval.

Where is he heading this year and why? The North Pole and the entire Arctic region have a rich history of discovery and exploration. Legendary expeditions in the name of national interests have led to discovery of new trade routes, which brought strategic and capital benefits. The Arctic is also a very important generator of weather. Changes in the ice shell can have a decisive impact on the speed and direction of ocean currents and thus the lives of the entire world.

Today, in the early 21st century, Arctic expeditions are still frequent. The north polar region has been crossed on foot, on skies, with icebreakers, submarines and aircrafts. But Light and Ultralight planes are still extremely rare in this part of the world. Despite the development of high performance ultralights, no one has overflown the North Pole from one continent to another.

Furthermore, the technical research instrumentation has been changed as well. Detection devices that weighed hundreds of pounds just a few years ago can now fit into a fuel efficient, low cost and nature friendly ultralight aircraft.

This is also the mission of the GreenLight WorldFlight project, which continues in spring 2013 over the Arctic and North Pole from Europe to Canada to complete the long distance flights by passing the North Atlantic from Newfoundland to Ireland following the route of Charles Augustus Lindberg`s record flight from New York-Paris, which was performed between 20 and 21 May 1927 with a plane called Spirit of St. Louis – this was the first cross-Atlantic flight without a stop in the history.

Let`s draw some parallels between the plane that Lindberg used and the plane that Lenarčič uses. Lindberg constructed his plane with the financial aid of some businessmen from St. Louis in Missouri; therefore, it was also called the Spirit of St. Louis. Spirit was a plane with an air-cooled radial nine-cylinder Wright Whirlwind motor that had the horse power of 223. It was produced by the Wright Aeronautical Corporation from Paterson, New Jersey; Lindberg selected the plane because it was the most appropriate with regard to its weight. The Pipistrel plane Virus-SW 914 that Lenarčič will again use is the fastest plane in its category in the world, consuming the least amount of fuel per flown distance. Its capabilities were proven twice in the NASA competition in the USA where the plane received a prestigious award for its incredible features two years running.

We will keep you informed on the project, while news is also available on the GreenLight WorldFlight website.

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