Bertrand Piccard Unveils Climate Impulse

Syensqo Technological Partner for Climate Action

07.02.2024 - Swiss explorer Bertrand Piccard has revealed his latest project: an emission-free airplane powered by green hydrogen. The aircraft aims to achieve a non-stop flight around the Earth, showcasing practical solutions for a cleaner and more efficient world. Partnering with Syensqo, this technological and environmental adventure will push the boundaries of innovation. The airplane is being developed in France by engineer and navigator Raphaël Dinelli.

Climate Impulse plans to complete in 2028 the first non-stop round-the-world flight in a green hydrogen-powered airplane. After 2 years of research, development, and design supported by Airbus, Daher, Capgemini, and with the participation of Ariane Group, the construction of the aircraft has begun and will last two years under the direction of Raphaël Dinelli. Following another two years of testing, this unique aircraft will attempt to fly non-stop all around the Equator with pilots Bertrand Piccard and Raphaël Dinelli.

Beside the production of green hydrogen from renewable energies, and its use through fuel cells to feed electric motors, the major challenge lies in maintaining liquid hydrogen at -253°C during an estimated nine days of flight. This will require revolutionary innovations in the creation of adapted thermal tanks, opening new horizons in aviation technology. The collaboration with Syensqo will enable Climate Impulse to develop these cutting-edge systems.

“More than flying around the world with a hydrogen airplane, Climate Impulse will explore new ways of thinking and acting to promote a better quality of life,” says Bertrand Piccard. “Efficient solutions will unite people from citizens and environmental activists to political and business leaders, shifting the narrative from sacrifice and fear to enthusiasm and action”. 

The latest adventure of Bertrand Piccard was Solar Impulse, the unprecedented round-the-world flight in a solar-powered airplane. Solar Impulse was a symbol based on the intuition that renewable energies and cleantech solutions could achieve environmental objectives considered to be impossible. Since then, more than 1500 efficient solutions have been identified and labeled by the Solar Impulse Foundation, certifying their environmental benefit and economic viability. Syensqo (formerly part of Solvay) was the first and main technological partner to team up with Bertrand Piccard nearly 20 years ago with the Solar Impulse flight. 

“We are thrilled to be part of this ultimate flight, a non-stop zero emission round the world fueled by green hydrogen. Our 13,200 Syensqo’ employees are proud to be part of this human, environmental and scientific adventure, showcasing the power of their sustainable innovations that will drive carbon neutrality for our customers and advance humanity,” says Ilham Kadri, CEO at Syensqo.



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