We departed Panama sometime just after midnight on March 13th to travel west toward the Colombian island of Malpelo, which came into view around 10am today. Everyone onboard was very excited to see the island, for many of us it is the first time.
Raymond Clerc, who previously spent 10 years working on the Solar Impulse project, will lead the first half of this mission in Malpelo. Raymond was the Head of Mission for 2 of the Solar Impulse flights with their first aircraft, and spent more than 6 months in Monaco operating from the Mission Control Center. Prior to this work, Raymond spent more than 40 years as a pilot.
Raymond’s duties as Head of Mission are many. While we are on board he will work with the scientific teams to understand their daily needs and will coordinate the daily logistics and schedule between the teams, the equipment managers, the boat captain, and the 2ndvessel, Ferox, who has joined us on the mission to accommodate the large number of scientists present. Prior to the mission, Raymond spent months preparing everything from flights and travel, to passing through the Panama Canal, and all logistics of permitting, equipment requirements, and travel regulations.