Month: April 2016

Tech, natural design and much more in this interview with André Borschberg of Solar Impulse

“Each obstacle can lead you to a better path, maybe to an opportunity,” André Borschberg shared with me in this interview on Sunday, the day after Solar Impulse completed the Pacific Crossing and arrived in Silicon Valley.  The camera wasn’t rolling right at the beginning so I added a short intro.  Enjoy!

 

 

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Advice for Entrepreneurs from Bertrand Piccard of Solar Impulse

“It is not with what we have learned that we will go further than others. It is with what we have not learned, with what we have not yet done and thought” Bertrand Piccard, Initiator, Chairman and Pilot of Solar Impulse shares in this interview.

 

Solar Impulse is a mission to fly around the world with only the power of the sun and share the message of clean and renewable energy. This is accomplished with a pioneering attitude and by leveraging the best of technology to do what has never been done before.

Piccard is no stranger to breaking records and inspiring the world. In 1999 he completed the first non-stop balloon flight around the world, setting world records for aviation’s longest flight in both distance and duration. When I asked his advice for entrepreneurs he referred to the function of balloons and then explained, “a good entrepreneur is the one who can drop his certitudes, his beliefs, all the common assumptions, to raise to other levels and catch other influences, other visions of the world, other solutions and strategies that will bring him in completely different directions.”

Piccard is not alone in this mission. Solar Impulse is also piloted by André Borschberg, Entrepreneur, Engineer and Explorer. The two are supported by an excellent team and by technology at every level, including monitoring and alerting the pilots and providing global live coverage during each leg of the mission. The Solar Impulse mission exemplifies the WorkTechWork mantra: Don’t work for technology; make technology work for you.

Learn more about Solar Impulse at www.SolarImpulse.com and follow the hashtag #FutureIsClean.

Solar Impulse: A Wearable Technology Enabled Journey

The world is watching the most incredible journey since mankind landed on the moon, the first round the world solar powered flight.  Solar Impulse is the plane, Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg are the pilots and wearable technology is an enabler in the journey.  Today during a Facebook LIVE Q&A session, I asked Piccard, who is the initiator and chairman of this adventure, this question:

You are coming to Silicon Valley, the epicenter of the wearable technology revolution.  Can you talk about the Omega cuffs and other sensing technologies that help you stay fit, alert and safe while in flight?  

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In reply, Piccard shared how he uses meditation and emWave Technology by HeartMath. “Its a mix of technology and meditation and its quite interesting,” he explained with a cheerful grin.

In addition to leveraging wearable tools to meditate, the pilot suits Piccard and Borschberg wear include special cuffs made by Omega.  The cuffs are similar to cuffs used to check blood pressure but include an interesting connected feature, they vibrate in order to alert the pilot of critical information about the plane.

Thus, sensing and notification technology allows the pilot time to relax and even sleep while flying for days on end.  These sensing and notification technologies are being built into all kinds of wearable technologies, including the two smart watches I wear, the Apple Watch and the Moto360.  Both of these wearables have heart rate monitors and both of vibrate with notifications.

But Piccard and Borschberg are leveraging the technology to accomplish something far more amazing than letting me know about a text message arriving.  They are showing the world what is possible with clean energy.  In his response, Piccard also expressed that Silicon Valley is “really the place for pioneers, of pioneers and innovation.”  Indeed, he is right and he will be welcome here as a pioneer in solar energy when he touches down tomorrow.