Electric Aircraft Ready to Take Off and Hit The Air
The new era of aviation might be underway soon as Airbus has announced to take the giant leap to launch manned electric aircraft.
Reversing Bleriot’s 1909 route, French designer and pilot Didier Esteyne will take off from Lydd Airfield on Friday morning in the Airbus E-Fan two-seater aircraft for a 38 minute journey. The plane is scheduled to take off from Lydd Airfield shortly after 9am on Friday morning. Even though, short routed test flights in electric planes has happened often but this journey might be a landmark and open new incentives for traveling vast distances using electric aviation technology-something never done before.
An electric aircraft runs on electric motors rather than internal combustion engines, with electricity coming from fuel cells, solar cells, ultracapacitors, power beaming or batteries. This simple means no resource fuel cost, less pollution, less noise and more compact-design.
Mr Esteyne, Airbus test pilot and designer of the E-Fan:
“I am immensely excited to be piloting the E-Fan on this historic flight.
“Like so many others in aviation industry Louis Blériot has been a hero and inspiration to me and it gives me great pride that I am able to honor his legacy with the first ever electric powered Channel crossing.
“The E-Fan project shows the role that electric flight can play in the future of aerospace and the Channel crossing is an important demonstration of its capabilities and a milestone in the project’s development.”
Compared with an average petrol run aircraft, the E-fan is way lighter and cheaper. Not only that, it is much more environmental and natural resource friendly. Again, the practical implications are huge, says Jean Botti, Chief Technical Officer of Airbus Group;
“110 years after the dawn of heavier-than-air powered flight, a new transformation is coming to aviation through electric and hybrid flight. The E-Fan project, and flights like the Channel Crossing, shows that the pioneering spirit and ingenuity demonstrated by Blériot and the other early aviators is still alive today. We hope that this flight will capture the imagination of the next generation of aviators and engineers, and encourage them to pursue their dreams of flying.”
“The aircraft flies like a conventional aircraft of its size, is very reliable and some of the big advantages are its zero emissions, almost noiseless flight and cost effectiveness.”
Airbus claims that electric-powered low-emission flight is crucial to meeting the European Union’s “Flightpath 2050” targets of reducing aviation carbon dioxide emissions by 75 per cent, nitrous oxide emissions by 90 per cent and noise levels by 65 per cent from year-2000 levels.