Africa

Morocco Solar Impulse flight ended by winds

Andre Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard
Image caption Andre Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard have alternated the flights they have piloted

The pilot of the solar-powered aircraft Solar Impulse has been forced to abandon a flight across Morocco.

The plane took off from the capital Rabat on Wednesday, aiming to reach the central city of Ouarzazate.

Pilot Andre Borschberg was not in danger, but strong headwinds forced him to turn back to Rabat, the Solar Impulse team said on its website.

The Solar Impulse arrived in Rabat from Madrid on 6 June, as part of a test run for a round-the-world flight in 2014.

The practice mission began in Switzerland in May, and Mr Borschberg and his co-pilot Bertrand Piccard have alternated the flights they have piloted.

The two men are also co-owners of the Swiss plane, which boasts a single seat and four motors and is about the size of an Airbus A340.

AFP reported that the plane had been airborne for some eight-and-a-half hours before the decision was made to turn back.

It was not confirmed when the next attempt would be made.

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