Aircraft manufacturer Boeing has unveiled an autonomous plane that flies on solar energy. In the spring of 2019, the solar plane must carry out its first flight. Not to carry passengers, but to do research.
The aircraft, the Odysseus, was developed by Aurora Flight Services, a part of the aerospace company. The Odysseus is 74 meters wide but weighs less than a small car. Because its wings are completely covered with solar panels, the aircraft can probably continue to fly around non-stop.
From the air, the Odysseus can then be used as a satellite. By making images of the earth in high resolution, for example, the soil quality of areas can be monitored. The melting of the ice caps can also be tracked.
According to the company, the aircraft can also be used for communication and espionage. How expensive the aircraft is is not clear.