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Solar Impulse 2 makes it across US with overnight flight to New York

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Solar Impulse

Solar Impulse 2 landed at New York's JFK airport early this morning, completing the latest leg of its trip around the world.

The solar-powered plane took off from Abu Dhabi just over a year ago with plans to make it across the globe in about four months. That plan stalled after it had to make an extended stay in Hawaii to address overheating issues with its batteries. It finally took off again in April and has now completed its journey across the US. This latest leg was a fairly short one, taking only five hours to travel from Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania to New York City.

Next up: the Atlantic

The plane's next leg is among its biggest: it's headed across the Atlantic, with plans to land somewhere between Ireland and Morocco. Possible destinations also include France, Spain, and Portugal. Solar Impulse says it has "no idea" when the flight will actually take off.

Solar Impulse's journey across the world is meant to promote clean energy and prove the viability of a solar-powered aircraft. Obviously, this trip has also shown that hurdles remain. But it's also shown how impressive a solar aircraft can be. Last year, the pilot André Borschberg set a world record for longest solo flight after spending nearly five days flying the Solar Impulse 2 across the Pacific.