Solar Impulse


I will be talking about my experience working as an electrical engineering on the ground crew of Solar Impulse: the first airplane to go around the world only powered by the sun!

This project accomplished something that still seems impossible today: the First Round-The-World Solar Flight, powered only by the sun, with no fuel or polluting emissions.
In line with the Piccard Family tradition of scientific exploration and protection of the environment, Solar Impulse wanted to demonstrate that clean technologies can achieve impossible goals.

The record breaking solo flight of 5 days and 5 nights without fuel from Nagoya to Hawaii gives a clear message : everybody could use the plane’s technologies on the ground to halve our world’s energy consumption, save natural resources and improve our quality of life. This message will continue to be spread by the pilots to the general public, students, key decision-makers and entrepreneurs all over the world.

In July, we landed in Abu Dhabi and I will talk about my experience throughout the project and how I coped with achieving the impossible!

  Date and Time




  • Date: 28 Nov 2016
  • Time: 06:30 PM to 08:00 PM
  • All times are EST
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  • 4350 Northern Pike, Suite 220
  • Monroeville, Pennsylvania
  • United States 15146-2808
  • Building: Westinghouse Energy Center
  • Click here for Map

  • Co-sponsored by PELS - Dr. Brandon Grainger
  • Starts 17 October 2016 12:00 AM
  • Ends 26 November 2016 12:00 AM
  • All times are EST
  • No Admission Charge


Paige Kassalen


Solar Impulse Ground Crew

Paige Kassalen is a commercial trainee for Covestro LLC. She has held this position since June 2015, based out of the company’s North American headquarters in Pittsburgh.

Kassalen joined Covestro in 2014 as a process control technology intern at its Baytown, Texas, plant site. In fall 2015, Kassalen was selected for a temporary assignment representing Covestro on the Solar Impulse ground crew. In this role, she traveled with the world’s first solar-powered airplane (Solar Impulse 2) as it completed its historic flight around the globe.

Her experience with Solar Impulse not only gave her the opportunity to apply her electrical engineering background in a new and exciting way, but it also marked the beginning of Kassalen’s role as a spokesperson for young women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). She continues to be a voice for the company in inspiring the next generation to create their own path in STEM fields.

Prior to joining Covestro, Kassalen gained valuable experience in her field completing her Electrical Engineering capstone project with Intel and internships with Westinghouse Electric Company and Federal Mogul.

The Pittsburgh native graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering. Kassalen is an active member of the IEEE Women in Engineering (WIE) Pittsburgh Chapter, serving as co-chair in 2015 and 2016. She is also involved in the Women’s Leadership Council – United Way of Allegheny County and the Pittsburgh Social Exchange.

Paige Kassalen


Solar Impulse Ground Crew



Dinner: 6:30-7

Presentation 7-8