- Pipistrel, a Slovenian light aircraft manufacturer, teamed up with Penn State University to compete in the 2011 CAFÉGreen Flight Challenge.
- Their aircraft, the Taurus, achieved 402.5 passenger miles per gallon and averaged a speed of 107 mph.
- Technologies developed for the competition may be utilized by NASA for future Mars missions.
Something special seems to be brewing across the Atlantic in the tiny country of Slovenia.
For the third time in company history, Pipistrel, a Slovenian light aircraft manufacturer based in Ajdovščina took home the biggest prize in aviation history at the 2011 CAFÉ Green Flight Challenge for energy-efficient aircraft sponsored by Google late last month.
As previous winners in 2007 and 2008 with its Pipistrel Virus design, the Slovenian company paired up with Penn State University as Team Pipistrel-USA.com.
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The challenge this year was to design an aircraft based on fuel efficiency: 200 miles in less than two hours while utilizing less than one gallon of fuel per occupant, or the equivalent of that in electricity.