Chip Yates Awarded Louis Bleriot Medal by FAI

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Chip Yates, founder and head of the Flight of the Century, has been honored by the Federation Aeronautique International for records set in 2013.  Chip’s web site announced the honor last week. “Record-setting entrepreneur and pioneer Chip Yates will be honored on October 16 by the World Air Sports Federation (Federation Aeronautique Internationale) for changing the course of aviation history. “Yates has been selected to receive the FAI’s Louis Bleriot Medal for his record-setting flights in 2013, which established new international landmarks in speed, altitude and distance for electric flight. “The award will be presented at the Opening Ceremony of the FAI General Conference in Pattaya, Thailand, where Yates will become part of the distinguished list of honorees since 1936 who have made …

Titan Aerospace and Its Low-Flying Satellites

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Ken Rentmeester, a regular reader of the blog, shared a news item from the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Spectrum.   Calling Titan Aerospace’s Solara unmanned aircraft “atmospheric satellites,” the article gives a brief history of solar-powered craft, including the Boucher brothers’ Sunrise I, the first solar-powered airplane in 1974, Paul MacCready Jr.’s first piloted solar-powered flight in 1980, and the current world’s endurance record for unmanned, solar-powered flight  by the QinetiQ Zephry in 2010. That airplane follows the look of the Boucher’s early effort, and Titan’s examples look a great deal like scaled-up versions of FAI F5-type models which rely on electric self-launching, rapid climbs and extreme flight capabilities to win contests. Despite great successes such as Zephyr’s, …

Chip Yates Breaks His Own Speed Record – Twice!

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Your editor was on hand Saturday, October 5 at the California State Airshow at Mather Field, 20 miles east of Sacramento, mainly to see if Chip Yates could break his own electric aircraft speed record in his Long-ESA (Electric Speed and Altitude). He did break his previous Guinness Book of World Records speed of 202.6 miles per hour (and more recent speeds) on Saturday, but topped that on Sunday, with a quiet run of 216.9 mph.  One Facebook fan wrote, “Incredible Plane… it’s a miracle.” The California Capital Airshow featured the usual crowd-pleasing noisy acts, with Chip being silently towed to runway’s end during fly-bys and aerobatics.  His takeoff drew a hush from the crowd, straining to hear the soft …