Phosphorene Nanoribbons may Enhance Batteries, Solar Cells

Dean Sigler Batteries, Electric Aircraft Materials, Hydrogen Fuel, Solar Power, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

A great deal is made of how many great scientific discoveries are made by accident for everything from penicillin to Post-its®.   With no fewer than ten authors for the Nature letter “Production of phosphorene nanoribbons,” their discovery hardly seems “accidental.”  The letter, authored by Mitchell C. Watts, Loren Picco, Freddie S. Russell-Pavier, Patrick L. Cullen, Thomas S. Miller, Szymon P. Bartuś, Oliver D. Payton, Neal T. Skipper, Vasiliki Tileli and Christopher A. Howard, explains their happy “accident.” A Happy Accident “Nanoribbons, meanwhile, combine the flexibility and unidirectional properties of one-dimensional nanomaterials, the high surface area of 2D nanomaterials and the electron-confinement and edge effects of both. The structures of nanoribbons can thus lead to exceptional control over electronic band structure, the emergence of novel phenomena and unique architectures for …

Lilium Elevates Five-Passenger Uber-Ready Vehicle

Dean Sigler Sky Taxis, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Uber Elevate, headed toward its third annual meeting in Washington, D. C., has established guidelines for what it wants to see flying in its service.  Lilium, a German electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing maker, has flown a vehicle that seems to meet those guidelines. The web site, A New Domain.net, notes, “The authors of the Uber paper point out that the high-profile German concept, the Lilium, is a ‘push to extremely high levels of distribution while coupling the vertical lift in closely with the wing high-lift system.’ The concern here, however, is that such jet-lift approaches “will require substantially higher power for takeoff and landing, with greater challenges operating quietly within cities,” according to the Uber paper.” “From the looks of it, …

Zipline Drones Use Modularity, Simplicity to Deliver Healthcare

Dean Sigler Electric Aircraft Components, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Fortune magazine headlined its article about Zipline drones with this teaser: “The Trick to Achieving Universal Health Care? Drones.”  The article quotes Zipline International CEO Keller Rinaudo concerning the logistics of today’s health care systems, which “really only serve the ‘golden billion’ people on the planet.”  Fortune adds, “Millions more die from lack of care.” Rinaudo spoke to Fortune’s Brainstorm Health Conference in San Diego, and explained how his Silicon Valley technology delivers 60-percent of Rwanda’s national blood supply – by drone.  About half of the blood goes to mothers suffering from postpartum hemorrhaging. With excellent results in Rwanda, Zipline will set up four distribution centers in Ghana, starting on April 24.  These centers will serve about 20 million people.  …

Straight out of Compton/Woodley

Dean Sigler Announcements, Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

We don’t normally republish complete press releases, but this example from Taja Boscarol at Pipistrel, the Slovenian electric aircraft company, seems worthy of a full reading. Los Angeles County Promoting Green Aviation Compton/Woodley Airport Acquires Pipistrel Alpha Electro Aircraft & Charging Station Los Angeles County Public Works, in partnership with Tomorrow’s Aeronautical Museum welcomed the nation’s first commercial electric aircraft charging station at Compton/Woodley Airport.  The Pipistrel  SkyCharge  docking  station will  support the museum’s two ALPHA Electro  Light  Sport all-electric  aircraft and  ultimately other electric  aircraft  in  the  future  as  electric  aircraft gain interest.   The SkyCharge docking station allows two aircraft to simultaneously charge an empty battery in 45 minutes. ​Expansion of Electric Aircraft at the County-owned Airports Tomorrow’s …

Eviation Alice to Paris Air Show, U. S. Certification

Dean Sigler Batteries, Electric Powerplants, Sky Taxis, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Eviation is an Israeli aircraft company which believes in giving its customers a choice.  About to be shown at the Paris Air Show in July, Eviation’s Alice will be offered with either Siemens motors or MagniX units.  Air show visitors will see the craft with three Magnix 250 motors producing 375-horsepower each.  Roei Ganzarski, MagniX CEO says “They’re going to have a fully functioning aircraft, their first of type, at the Paris Air Show.  Our propulsion system is going to be on it.” Eviation’s nine-seat Alice is a bit of a trip through the looking glass, looking like a futurist’s dream machine.  The modern tri-motor features such light construction that it can carry three tons of batteries to provide 650 …

Cuberg Battery Flies 70 Percent Longer

Dean Sigler Batteries, Electric Aircraft Materials, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Cuberg’s recent test between their battery and a conventional lithium-ion battery resulted in the Cuberg battery keeping a drone flying 70-percent longer.  Given that the test is for two packs of equal weight, the result is an impressive one.  Cuberg’s co-founder and CEO has prepared for this success since his undergraduate days as a SURF (Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship) Fellow, putting his summer vacations to good use.  He used the knowledge and experience he gained in three summer fellowships to help lead a dozen students “to design and develop innovative and efficient mechanical systems (including HVAC, hot water, insulation, appliances, and more) for the Solar Decathlon net-zero house competition.”  The team won first place in the hot water contest and second …

Sustainable Aviation Symposium 2019

Dean Sigler Announcements, SAS, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

The 2019 Sustainable Aviation Symposium is moving to a new date and location – and a new inclusiveness. The University of California, Berkeley Institute for Transportation Studies (ITS) will host the 2019 Sustainable Aviation Symposium (SAS) on October 7-8 of 2019.  SAS 2019 is focused on safe, quiet, electric aviation solutions to the most pressing problems of our age: climate change, urban surface gridlock, and the need for integrated community and urban planning to enable high proximity aviation at meaningful scale. Dr. Jasenka Rakas, founder and head of the Airport Design Studio at the University of California at Berkeley, and Sustainable Aviation Foundation founder and President Dr. Brien Seeley will co-chair the meeting that will present a challenging review of aviation’s …

First Drone Delivery of a Kidney

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Meredith Cohn of the Baltimore Sun reported, “The first-ever organ delivered by drone was transplanted into a patient with kidney failure at the University of Maryland Medical Center, capping more than three years of work to show unmanned aircraft can safely transport life-saving organs and tissue.” Note one doctor in the video, making a homage to Apollo 11: “One small hop for a drone, one major leap for medicine.”  Note the cheers of waiting personnel when the drone lands successfully. As reported in Aero-News Network, “On Friday, April 19th, at approximately 12:30 am, a human donor kidney was loaded onto the UMMC drone. The flight, led by the University of Maryland UAS Test Site at St. Mary’s County, commenced at 1:00 …

Honda’s Fluoride Battery

Dean Sigler Batteries, Electric Aircraft Materials, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Can the stuff that protects your teeth find happiness storing electrical energy?  Researchers are brushing up on their chemistry to produce a fluoride battery – almost the total opposite of a lithium battery.  Three years ago, The Journal of Fluorine Chemistry quibbled, “Only a handful of publications exist on the topic of fluoride ion batteries (FIBs). These are electrochemical cells in which a negative anion—fluoride—enables charge transport. In this review, we will report, for the first time, an extensive theoretical screening of FIBs as well as an analysis of the safety and toxicity of electrochemical couples of such batteries.”   It continued with an exploration of high-temperature (150° C, or 302° F) and room-temperature examples of fluoride cells and ended with …

Equator P2 Flies Out of Ground Effect

Dean Sigler Batteries, Diesel Powerplants, Electric Powerplants, Hybrid Aircraft, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Following a decade of development, Tomas Broedreskift’s Equator P2 Excursion prototype made its first flights out of ground effect, a significant step in flight testing. It flew in ground effect just above the runway on March 29, 2018.  This helped verify the center of gravity and enabled further tests under audit by the Norwegian Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA), which gave its release for full test at the end of February.  In a brief email, Brodreskift told your editor, “After 8 years in development it was about time!” Two flights on March 29 and March 31, 2019 gave the team the assurance that all systems are “go” for further testing.  Everything, according to test pilot Eskil Amdal, was more than acceptable.  …