PC-Aero Wins Lindbergh Electric Aircraft Vision Award

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, GFC, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

A Green Flight Challenge entrant, PC-Aero’s Elektra One, has won the Lindbergh Electric Aircraft Vision Award at AirVenture 2011 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, becoming the latest winner of this important award for innovation in the pursuit of “green” aviation. Past winners of the Lindbergh Prize for Electric Aircraft include: Pipistrel: 2011 Aero-Friedrichshafen Best  Electric Aircraft LZ Design: 2011 Aero-Friedrichshafen Best  Electric Propulsion System Solar Impulse: 2011 Aero-Friedrichshafen  Outstanding Achievement Award Yuneec International: 2010 AirVenture Best  Electric Aircraft Sonex: 2010 AirVenture Best Electric Aircraft  Subsystem Lange Aviation: 2010 AirVenture Individual  Achievement Award According to Erik Lindbergh, grandson of Charles Lindbergh and founder of LEAP, the organization’s, “Programs recognize, inspire and incentivize the innovation that drives our culture, economy and future.  The LEAP …

Elektra One Flies Into Oshkosh with Solar Cells

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, GFC, Sustainable Aviation 1 Comment

As described before in this blog, PC-Aero’s Elektra One is a single-seat electric airplane with an Eck/Geiger 13.5 kilowatt motor in the nose, and now at least partially solar powered. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r03nim-6qBw&feature=related Designer Calin Gologan gives a walkthrough of the design features which make Elektra One such an efficient airplane, and one likely to give other competitors in the Green Flight Challenge a good run.  While he describes the thin carbon-fiber shells which comprise the airplane’s primary structure, notice the light shining through.  That thinness helps explain Elektra One’s 100 kilogram (220 pounds) empty weight, only about 100 pounds of which is structure.  The motor is 4.7 kilogram (10.34 pounds) and the controller is a 270 gram (9-1/2 ounce) model airplane …

A Useful Spreadsheet and GFC Handicapping Tool

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, GFC, Sustainable Aviation 1 Comment

For analyzing the greatest economy from an aircraft’s design, Howard Handelman, a highly-engaged reader of this blog, provides a link to his web site, which includes a downloadable spreadsheet he has devised that will give the inquiring reader hours of enjoyment. Handelman, self-described as, “just a retired IT guy,” with “weak math skills,” but a “compulsively curious” nature, has devised a tool for analyzing any airplane’s performance based on a few known variables, and which he has applied to many of the Green Flight Challenge’s aircraft. The basis for his analyses is his “triangle tool,” a wedge that can be used to help design propellers, “test [the] truth” of claimed aircraft performance, and estimate brake horsepower in real life circumstances (at …

Electric Gull Flies at Arlington

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 3 Comments

The annual fly in at Arlington, Washington was an electric landing zone for Mark Beierle’s Gull 2000, powered by his own design 20-kilowatt motor.  The 36-coil, 42 magnet disk, weighing 16 pounds, is mounted on a truss arrangement behind the airplane’s high wing, and drives a ground-adjustable pusher propeller. Flying five half-hour demonstration flights during the half-week event accounted for almost half the six hours total time on the airplane so far. The airplane has a 74-Volt Rhino Lithium-polymer battery pack made up to 11 packs in a parallel/series arrangement. Beierle says this array, and taking voltage from the ends of each 3.7-Volt series pack, allows balancing of all 210 cells. Power is run through a 500-Amp Kelly controller, which weighs …