Solar Impulse, the world’s most-advanced, solar-powered aeroplane of Swiss pioneers André Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard, has enlisted the help of Akamai’s Aqua Web Experience Solutions to optimize performance of the organization’s website. In support of the historic final leg of 2013 Across America mission flights that took place July 6, 2013, Akamai helped ensure that more than 245000 visitors to Solar Impulse’s website could follow the flight via consistent high performance live streamed video footage and access corresponding rich dynamic data.
Solar Impulse is an innovative project leveraging solar and other types of technological innovation to demonstrate the huge potential of clean technologies. The Solar Impulse plane completed the world’s first solar-powered 26-hour day and night flight in 2010. Then, in July 2013, Solar Impulse successfully completed a celebrated coast-to-coast flight of the United States.
Having previously harnessed the potential of the web to share the progress of the project, to educate, to stream all flights LIVE and so help gain global awareness and interest in its ideas and potential, this was also expected to play a key part of the communications strategy for the 2013 Across America mission.
As a consequence, knowing that they would be receiving a very high number of visitors during the live stream of the last flight of the crossing between Washington D.C. to New-York the team behind the project wanted to ensure consistent website performance to avoid outages, even at peak visitor times, so that everyone could access the LIVE page, information, video and other content 24/7. In order to achieve this, they approached Akamai to see if they could help support this key aspect of the project’s success.
“We have been fortunate to have the support of a number of key partners helping to ensure the success of our website so that visitors to it could gain more information and background on Solar Impulse’s US flight, as well as seeing live video feed of the progress of the flight from onboard the plane,” explained Gregory Blatt, Managing Director Marketing, Solar Impulse. “The main challenge that we faced was finding a partner who would be able to integrate all this rich and dynamic content, ensuring that it was accessible to all our users regardless of which device they were using to interact with our site and where they were located globally. Akamai’s Aqua Web Experience Solutions had the functionality to take care of all these concerns and gave us the peace of mind that we needed to focus on the climax of the mission.”
Akamai’s Aqua Web Experience Solutions offer a cohesive, integrated collection of performance capabilities, to optimize website performance in a wide range of scenarios and environments.
In order to offer an engaging Web experience to their visitors and to allow them to be part of the adventure, Solar Impulse included various elements to their Website such as a live streaming of the entire flight, access to real time data from the airplane, hangout in air with Solar Impulse pilots, and much more. The complexity of the website with dynamic content as well as high expectation in terms of visitors required a solution which provides first-class performance, infrastructure offload and site availability for its assortment of site offerings during the concluding leg of its trans-America.
“Solar Impulse's ambition is to invigorate the public’s enthusiasm for great adventures and drive support for technologies that decrease dependence on fossil fuels. A dynamic and engaging website is the perfect complement to the Solar Impulse flights to help the organization meet
these important goals,” explained Henri d’Oriola, Vice President Southern Europe. “Akamai’s Aqua Web Experience Solutions proved up to the task of providing an exceptional experience, to a huge number of visitors to Solar Impulse’s highly dynamic, highly complex website.”