eUP Makes First Canadian Electric Flight

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 2 Comments

John McClintock and Randy Rauck have been developing an electrically-powered hang-glider “trike” for the last year, and Saturday, December 8, Rauck took their Green1 battery-powered hang-glider skyward – Canada’s first electric flight. Taking off at approximately 10:00 a. m., Rauck flew a smooth circuit of the Pitt Meadows airport, southwest of Vancouver, B. C.  The pair have been bench and ground testing their Electravia motor, controller and battery pack as part of their creation of eUP, a firm dedicated to making electric flight possible in ultralight aircraft. In eUP’s press release, McClintock says, “This is a very exciting day in Canadian aviation history. While eUP will offer this system on other aircraft, right now the state-of-the-art in electric flight is …

Paramotors Get Own Web Site – And It Speaks French

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Anne Lavrand of Electravia in Sisteron, France has announced a new web site, dedicated to her company’s electric powered paragliders (PPG). Initially, the new web site will promote Electravia’s e-Spider Mono ultralight powered parachute, a 23 kilogram (50.6 pounds) package with: • A 17 horsepower electric motor and controller, an e-Screen, three-inch LED display showing motor and battery status. • an e-Props 1.6 meter (5.25 feet) propeller in Electravia’s unique QD2 arrangement, which offsets blade angles to generate more thrust and less noise. • a Kokam lithium-polymer battery pack (1.55 kWh), with battery management system (BMS) and protection circuit module (PCM). • a charger for lithium-polymer batteries. • a 1.6 meter diameter aluminum hexagonal cage, weighing only 4 kilograms (8.8 pounds). …

The Little Firefly That Could

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 2 Comments

This little airplane is the fastest in its category in the world, unofficially. Flying from Koksijde, Belgium’s military airport, it clocked 189.87 kilometers per hour (117.7 mph) over a 15-kilometer straight-line course, a big improvement over its official speed record set on February 27 of this year. It also holds the official altitude and distance record in its class. Designed by Michel Colomban, one of the engineers for the Concorde, the MC-30 Luciole (Firefly) has a structure weighing only 98 pounds, ideal for adding heavy battery packs as part of its electrification. Its Lynch-type motor, controller and batteries were supplied by Anne Lavrand at Electravia, and have flown in the MC-30 for over a year. These are similar to the motors used …

A Different Kind of Hybrid Aircraft

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 3 Comments

A father and son team have done amazing things with the Colomban MC-15 Cri-Cri: Hugues Duval, the son setting a world speed record at last year’s Paris Air Show, and Yves, the father, resurrecting a decade-old airshow act. At an airshow in Gergy-Pontoise, France this year, according to Anne Lavrand, head of Electravia and motor supplier to the little electric speedster, “Spectators were able to admire the return of the famous Shuttle Bretonne,” a Broussard liaison aircraft carrying the Cristalline Cri-Cri aloft. Anne Lavrand explains, “At the end of the 90s, Yves Duval, Hughes’ father, presented in airshows the “Breton Shuttle”: a Broussard with a small Cri-Cri on its top for the take-off, then… during flight, Cri-Cri takes off from the …

Two Minimal Electric Hang Gliders with Maximal Enjoyment

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

We’ve seen two electrically-powered paragliders announced in the last few months; a single pilot British homebuilt by Tony Canderton and a tandem unit from Electravia.  A pair of European hang-gliders are also using small electric motors to launch their minimalist frames skyward. Michael Kellermann, well known for his conversion of Briggs & Stratton engines into ultralight powerplants, has designed the Schwarze Elektro Minimum, a hang glider mounting two model aircraft electric motors (looking a lot like Turnigies) for launching from smooth surfaces and elevating its 180 kilogram (396 pound) mass up to 500 meters (1,600 feet). The prototype “will still merit improvement,” with plans for a folding propeller and fairing to smooth airflow around the power system. The Minimum sports …

32 and Counting as E-Spider Lifts Two

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Anne Lavrand, founder and head of Electravia in Sisteron, France, emailed to tell of her latest creation before packing up to attend the Basse-Ham, France powered paraglider meet and airshow, the Mondial de Paramoteurs.  She wrote, “I hope this new realization will have some success there!” She announced “first flights of the E-SPIDER, the first 2-seater electric powered paraglider in the world.”  The 32nd aircraft flown with her power system attached, it reflects what this hard-working woman has been able to accomplish since 2007, with customers in Europe, Australia, Brazil, China, Taiwan, the USA and Canada.  It joins an array of single and twin motor ultralight aircraft, motorgliders, trikes, hang gliders, and paramotors electrified by Electravia.  Anne’s team has even …

Holding All the (Official) Records

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

If you go to the Federation Aeronautique Internationale web site, you’ll find only three officially ratified ratified records for Sub-Class RAL1E, Electric-powered Microlights with moveable aerodynamic controls.  They all belong to Jean Luc Soullier and Luxembourg Spécial Aerotechnics – L.S.A., assisted by fellow members Martin Marschner von Helmreich, Fabrice Tummers and Roman Marcinowski, flying their Colomban MC-30 Luciole (Firefly).  The F. A. I. made their February 2 flight achievements official just a few weeks ago. This small group developed the current power system with Electravia, and campaigned the airplane at Sisteron, France for these initial records.  They plan on going higher, faster and farther, including a flight across a significant body of water. Jean Luc shared the following with your …

New FAI Records for Electric Flight

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Jean Luc Soullier of Belgium claimed three world records for electric aircraft in the FAI RAL1E (microlight electric, single place, landplane with moveable aerodynamic controls) sub-class on February 2, 2012 at Sisteron, France – home of Electravia. All three records are being scrutinized by the Federation Aeronautique Internationale. Soullier attained an altitude of 2,401 meters (7,877 feet), covered 50.27 kilometers (31.17 miles) over a closed circuit course without landing, and averaged 136.36 kilometers per hour (84.54 mph) for that distance. All records are claimed in Soullier’s Colomban MC-30 Luciole, powered by a Lynch-type motor and controller supplied by Electravia. These are not the MC-30’s or Soullier’s first records. He set a speed record on a 15 kilometer course with the …

Going Vintage Electrically

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 4 Comments

On December 21, 2011, Samy Dupland test flew Electravia’s latest adaptation of its electric power systems.  The Electrolight 2, a Fauconnet A60 on which Electravia head Anne Lavrand and Dupland mounted their 26 hp motor and power pack, is a French version of the Scheibe L-Spatz (Sparrow) standard class sailplane. With a 5.55 kilowatt hour lithium polymer battery pack, the electric microlight glider can stay up for one hour, 45 minutes or gain up to 3,000 meters (9,842 feet).  Its cruising speed is between 100 kilometers per hour (62 miles per hour) and 150 km/h (93 mph), with its range doubtless dropping at higher speeds.  Its maximum weight is 315 kilograms (693 pounds) with a recovery parachute, right at the …

Lighting Up the Electric Firefly

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 2 Comments

One highly enjoyable aspect of writing this blog is waking up in the morning to emails from France, announcing some exciting developments for those who love small aircraft. Fabrice Tummers from Luxembourg Special Aerotechnics (LSA) and Anne Lavrand from Electravia alerted your editor to a cooperative venture in which they swapped out the original Eck/Geiger motor/controller and Helix propeller combination  (with which the airplane set a class speed record) on LSA’s MC-30e Luciole (Firefly) for an Electravia power package. Since many of the Michel Colomban-designed MC-30s are powered by a Briggs & Stratton V-twin that produces about 26 horsepower, the new electric motor setup provides a great opportunity to compare electric and internal combustion performance. It should be a fair …