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 …

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 …

The Electric Firefly Sets Two World Records

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Jean-Luc Soullier has converted Michel Colomban’s two-cylinder internal combustion MC-30 Luciole (Firefly) into an electric aircraft – not without some teething problems, but with plenty of promise.  His group, LSA, Luxembourg Spécial Aerotechnics, consists of Jean-Luc, Martin Marschner von Helmreich, and Fabrice Tummers – and has terrific ambitions. Fabrice, in response to questions about the record attempts, sent the following: “Our target in 2011 is to realize the totality of the world records of the F.A.I. in the category RAL 1E, and cross the Mediterranean Sea.  The first attempt [a speed record] was not ratified by the F.A.I. but the medium speed recorded was 160 kilometers per hour (99.4 mph) over 15 kilometers. (9.3 miles)” With the 118 pounds of batteries …