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New Zealand strait crossed for first time by electric plane

elisfkc2 / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Associated Press

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — The first person to fly across New Zealand’s Cook Strait in an electric plane says he did so with plenty of battery power to spare. Gary Freedman’s 40-minute solo flight came 101 years after the first conventional aircraft flight over the strait that separates New Zealand’s two main islands. Monday’s flight was aimed at drawing attention to the possibilities of greener flying and timed to coincide with the opening of a pivotal U.N. climate summit in Scotland. Freedman’s plane weighs less than 880 pounds and is much quieter than a traditional aircraft. He maintained a slow speed and low altitude to conserve power and had almost enough battery charge remaining to make a round trip.

Associated Press

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