Sustainable Soaring

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Glaser-Dirks Flugzeugbau, the German sailplane manufacturer, has introduced the DG-1001te, a two-seat, electric turbo craft that can sustain flight and even show a modest rate of climb, but is not capable of self-launching. The “turbo” designation is common on European craft that rely on a pop-up motor to maintain flight in unfavorable soaring conditions.  Following an aero-tow or winch launch, the sustainer engine is used to allow “get-home mode” operation, or to maintain altitude while the pilot searches for areas of better lift. Until recently, single- and two-cylinder Solo two-stroke engines served on many applications.  Electric motors are beginning to find favor, though, because of their ease of starting and the fact that their light weight and high power output …