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Solar powered plane finishes journey, lands in N.Y.

Solar Impulse pilots Bertrand Piccard (left) Andre Borschberg after landing in New York City.
Solar Impulse pilots Bertrand Piccard (left) Andre Borschberg after landing in New York City. Credit: AFP/Getty Imsages

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NEW YORK— A solar-powered aircraft completed the final leg of a history-making cross-country flight Saturday night, gliding to a smooth stop at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport.

The Solar Impulse touched down at JFK at 11:09 p.m., completing the final leg of the cross-continental journey that started in California in early May. For Saturday’s final leg, the aircraft left Dulles International Airport a little before 5 a.m.

The flight plan for the revolutionary plane, powered by some 11,000 solar cells on its oversized wings, had called for it to pass the Statue of Liberty before landing early Sunday at New York. But an unexpected tear discovered on the left wing of the aircraft Saturday afternoon forced officials to scuttle the fly-by.

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