SolarStratos: Raphaël Domjan réalise la première «chute libre solaire»

En sautant de l’avion solaire SolarStratos avec un parachute, l’éco-aventurier neuchâtelois Raphaël Domjan a réalisé deux premières mondiales, tôt ce mardi matin.
25 août 2020, 11:12
Raphaël Domjan au moment de s'élancer depuis l'avion SolarStratos, ce mardi matin.

Pour la première fois, un saut en parachute a été effectué depuis un avion électrique. Ce mardi matin, l’éco-aventurier neuchâtelois Raphaël Domjan est sorti de l’habitacle de l’avion SolarStratos et s’est jeté dans le vide, au-dessus de Payerne. Et comme l’aéronef était monté à 1537 mètres d’altitude (à peu près 5000 pieds) à l’aide de l’énergie solaire uniquement, ce saut est tout simplement la première «chute libre solaire» jamais effectuée.

En savoir plus: La vidéo de la «première chute libre solaire» (saut à 26:00)

Quinze secondes de chute libre

L’avion a décollé vers 7h40 ce mardi matin de l’aéropole de Payerne. Après un vol d’environ 20 minutes assuré par le pilote d’essai Miguel A. Iturmendi, Raphaël Domjan s’est gentiment libéré de l’habitacle de SolarStratos, s’est tenu quelques secondes sur l’aile de l’avion puis a sauté. Il a pu ouvrir son parachute sans souci, après une quinzaine de secondes de chute libre. 

A lire aussi: Profession: pilote d’essai pour SolarStratos

Le Neuchâtelois s’est dit «très fier de cet aboutissement». «C’est un message d’espoir pour les générations futures: demain, ils pourront toujours rêver et réaliser des activités comme le parachutisme mais sans émission de gaz à effet de serre», a-t-il dit, selon le communiqué envoyé à la suite de l’événement. Un parterre d’invités ont assisté à l’événement, dont notamment l’auteur du tour du monde en ballon Bertrand Piccard et le directeur de Présence Suisse, Nicolas Bideau.

L’avion SolarStratos lors de sa montée à 5000 pieds, avant le saut de Raphaël Domjan. Photo: Fred Merz / Lundi 13

Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan boards in the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard before a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies in front of the Mont Blanc massif with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
epa08623875 Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan flies from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, 25 August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during the test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight.  EPA/JEAN-CHRISTOPHE BOTT
epa08623872 Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan jumps from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, 25 August 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight.  EPA/LAURENT GILLIERON / POOL  EPA-EFE/LAURENT GILLIERON / POOL
Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan reacts upon landing after he jumped with a parachute from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE/Jean-Christophe Bott)
Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan jumps from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE POOL/Laurent Gillieron)
Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan jumps from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (Laurent Gillieron/Keystone via AP)
epa08623860 Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan jumps from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, 25 August 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight.  EPA/LAURENT GILLIERON / POOL
Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan reacts before take off from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, Tuesday, August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight. (KEYSTONE/Jean-Christophe Bott)
epa08623858 Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan falls into the sky after jumping from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, 25 August 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight.  EPA/LAURENT GILLIERON / POOL
epa08623859 Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan falls into the sky after jumping from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, 25 August 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight.  EPA/LAURENT GILLIERON / POOL
epa08623857 Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan (L) reacts with wiss Pilot Bertrand Piccard (R), initiator and chairman of the Solar Impulse project, upon landing after he jumped with a parachute from the SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype with Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, 25 August 25, 2020. Two world record were made during the test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight.  EPA/JEAN-CHRISTOPHE BOTT
epa08623855 SolarStratos solar powered aircraft prototype flies with Swiss adventurer Raphael Domjan and Spanish test pilot Miguel A. Iturmendi aboard during a test flight and attempt to break two world records at the airbase in Payerne, Switzerland, 25 August 2020. Two world record were made during today's test flight, the first jump in history from an electric aircraft exclusively charged with solar energy and the first solar free fall. The main objective of the SolarStratos Mission project is to be the first solar flight to achieve stratospheric flight.  EPA/LAURENT GILLIERON / POOL
par Matthieu Henguely