LEAP Awards at WSEA

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

At the World Symposium on Electric Aircraft, AirVenture’s overview of electric aircraft progress, the morning session ended with the presentation of the LEAP (Lindbergh Electric Aircraft Prize) awards.  Erik Lindbergh, grandson of Charles and Anne Morrow Lindbergh and founder of the Creative Solutions Alliance, announced the winners at the July 30 session. According to the Alliance’s press release, “LEAP is a suite of prizes that recognizes significant contributions to the development of practical electric flight, and stimulates meaningful advances in the fledgling electric aircraft industry. LEAP awarded a total of $25,000 in prize money, an amount equal to the Orteig prize that was won by Charles Lindbergh for his 1927 solo crossing of the Atlantic Ocean. In doing so, Charles Lindbergh …

Hanging on The Prop, Backwards

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Burt Rutan, as part of his keynote address at the World Symposium on Electric Aircraft, “’mused about electric-powered aerobatic aircraft whose reversible motors would enable them to deliver symmetric or asymmetric thrust as called for by each maneuver,’” according to the Experimental Aircraft Association’s news release by James Wynbrandt. “’Imagine an Oshkosh air show where [the planes] dive straight toward the ground and stop,’” Rutan said. ‘They’re not fantasy anymore. The RC [radio-controlled model] indoor guys are doing this. “’It’s happening. It’s easy to do.’” Video proof of Rutan’s assertion can be found on YouTube. The Electric Tournament of Champions, held at Toledo, Ohio April 3rd and 4th, 2009 drew competitors from all over the world.  As shown in the video, R. …

Sikorsky’s Project Firefly™ Electric Helicopter Demonstrator

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

 Sikorsky Innovations, the technology development arm of Sikorsky Aircraft, revealed last week at the Farnborough International Air show and this week at AirVenture 2010, the Firefly™ Technology Demonstration Aircraft, the first all-electric helicopter. Based on an S-300C, the electrified version replaces the original Lycoming drive train with a U.S. Hybrid power package consisting of a 200 horsepower electric motor, motor controller, and 1,100-pound lithium- battery from Gaia.  To monitor operations and “the health” of the craft, Sikorsky has installed an LCD display in the modified center console. One benefit of electrified helicopters would be the discarding of the traditional complex series of mechanical links between the main rotor power takeoff and the tail rotor.  The tail rotor on Firefly can …

AirVenture 2010 World Symposium At Eagle Hangar

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

An indication of the enthusiasm people are showing for the potential of electric flight, tickets are going fast for the Experimental Aircraft Association’s 2010 World Symposium on Electric Aircraft, part of AirVenture 2010.   The WSEA will be held on Friday July 30 on the Eagle Hangar main stage. The morning session, titled, “The Dream of Flight,” runs from 9 a.m. to Noon.  The lunch session, “The Voice of Experience: Electric Aircraft Builders,” runs from Noon to1:30 p.m., and the afternoon session, “Putting Vision to Practice,” runs from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. According to the EAA, “Among the confirmed participants for the symposium are FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt; Electric Aircraft Corporation founder Randall Fishman; Yuneec founder Tian Yu; Sonex Aircraft founder John Monnett; …