After four years of design and two years of construction, the plane made its first "flea hop"—flying 1,148 feet at an airfield in Dübendorf, Switzerland—at the end of 2009. The real test occurred in July 2010, when Borschberg piloted the plane through the night for the first time above Payerne, Switzerland. "We didn't know how exactly the airplane would perform," he says. "Would we use more energy than what we planned? Would we encounter downdrafts?" With no autopilot, he flew in a seated position for 26 hours straight, using yoga techniques to stretch in the cramped cabin. When he landed, he had set three records, including the highest altitude for a piloted solar aircraft, at 30,300 feet, and the longest solar flight, at 26 hours, 10 minutes, and 19 seconds.