The sun is long gone, and the countdown to dawn is ticking away. The crowds of press and crew have dwindled to a minimum at the Payerne airfield. I am one of a handful of people awake and alert during this event. A photographer once told me the key to a good picture is timing. “You just need to be there,” he said. That is also true of journalism. At 1 a.m. I was allowed into the sacred heart of this Solar Impulse project to interview pilot Andre Borschberg. I and a French journalist were the only two allowed into the control room, and the interviews were broadcast at solarimpulse.com.
Solar Impulse is in the air, and has been flying for 12 hours gathering solar energy from its 12,000 solar panels affixed to its massive wings. Your humble correspondent had a few minutes with Bertrand Piccard, the lead of the Solar Impulse project and the first man to circumnavigate the Earth in a hot air balloon. Here is my interview with Piccard, giving the latest. (as of 1800, 7June10.)