|Test flight of the Gossamer Penguin|
|National origin||United States|
|First flight||May 18, 1979|
|Developed from||Gossamer Albatross|
|Developed into||Solar Challenger|
The Gossamer Penguin was a solar-powered experimental aircraft created by Paul MacCready's AeroVironment. MacCready, whose Gossamer Condor had made the first human-powered flight in 1977, told reporters two weeks in June, 1980 that "The first solar-powered flight ever made took place on May 18." The testing ground was at Minter Field outside of Shafter, California. 
The Penguin was a 3/4 scale version of the Gossamer Albatross II, and had a 71 ft.(21.64 meter) wingspan and a weight, without pilot, of 68 lb (31 kg). The powerplant was an AstroFlight Astro-40 electric motor, driven by a 541 watt solar panel consisting of 3920 solar cells.
Initial test flights were performed using a 28 cell NiCad battery pack instead of a panel. The test pilot for these flights was MacCready's 13-year-old son Marshall, who weighed 80 lb (36 kg).
The official pilot for the project was Janice Brown, a charter pilot with commercial, instrument, and glider ratings who weighed slightly less than 100 lb (45 kg). She flew the Penguin approximately 40 times before a 1.95 mi (3.14 km) public demonstration at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center on August 7, 1980.
Data from MacCready, Lissaman, Morgan, and Burke 1983
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Gossamer Penguin.|