Bertrand Piccard Lausanne, Switzerland
- Famed Swiss scientist-adventurer
- Pioneer of sustainable energy technology
- Pilot of first round-the-world aeroplane flight powered only on renewable energy (in 2016)
Bertrand Piccard is a scientist and aviator, renowned for his pioneering aerial adventures and for promoting more sustainable and even pollution-free travel. He is often called an ‘Inspioneer’ as he he has become an influential voice within the distinguished organisations such as the United Nations, the World Economic Forum, COP21, TED, the European Institution as well as with many national governmental bodies.
Bertrand was one of the pilots of the ‘Solar Impulse’, a solar-powered aeroplane designed to fly non-stop around the world. Its maiden flight was in June 2009 and its first 24-hour flight in July 2010. Solar Impulse 2 began its record-breaking attempt to fly around the world in March 2015, and completed its journey in July 2016.
Bertrand comes from a family of explorers and scientists. He studied psychiatric medicine and became a leading expert in hypnotherapy. At the same time, he pioneered hang-gliding in Europe, becoming 1985 European aerobatics champion.
In 1992, with Wim Verstraeten, he won the first transatlantic balloon race, the Chrysler Challenge. In 1999, with Englishman Brian Jones, he co-piloted the Breitling Orbiter on the first non-stop round-the-world balloon flight (45,755 kilometres in 20 days). For this feat he received the Légion d’Honneur and was appointed goodwill ambassador for the United Nations.
Bertrand is also founder of the Winds of Hope charity, working with the WHO to fight the disfiguring Noma disease in Africa.
He has written three books: “Quand le vent souffle dans le sens de ton chemin” ,“The Greatest Adventure” and “Around the World in 20 Days” .