Aloha from Iolani and E-Hawk

Dean Sigler Announcements, Batteries, Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 1 Comment

Take a skillful design by an ultralight aircraft expert, add a small but dedicated group of high school students, a versatile advisor, and you end up with an electric aircraft that incorporates cutting edge innovation with a traditional airframe.  Iolani High School’s E-Hawk has been flying over Hawaii for the last few months, a reminder of how skilled and talented today’s high schoolers can be.

Your editor did an article for Kitplanes magazine about their endeavors, with great help from the students and their advisor, Martin Emde.  The most surprising part of that story was how many electronic systems were essentially designed and fabricated by the students.  These included battery packs and some fairly sophisticated instrumentation.

For instance, this motor monitor is a bespoke device, designed, programmed, and crafted by the students.  Some of the readouts from the instrument show up on the right side of the screen in the video below, part of the November 25 flight.

Mike Friend, working with his own group of students and fellow advisors on an eXenos (blog entry soon) at the Bremerton, Washington airport, has invited us to a ZOOM presentation on Wednesday, January 11.  The agenda is a chance to see ultralight and electric flight from the tropics.  Mike sends the following:

“Greetings Rainbirds,

“Mark your calendar now for our January 11th gathering. Pot-Luck at 6:30,  meeting at 7pm.

“We have four presentations planned

“1.  A Zoom presentation by Armin Engert of Hang Gliding Maui on flying LSAs in Hawaii.  20 minutes 7:00 – 7:20

  1. A Zoom presentation by EAA chapter 1182 on Oahu on flying experimental in Hawaii. 15 minutes 7:25 – 7:40  website:

“3.  A Zoom presentation by the Iolani E-Hawk program about their student-built electric ultralight (20 minutes) 7:45 – 8:10

“Background – There have been a handful of students working on the E-Hawk Plane Project in Hawaii over the years, all of whom are either former or current Iolani School students. Although it started as an extracurricular project, from the fall of 2020, the E-Hawk Plane Project will be continued as part of the Advanced Innovation and Leadership Project Course offered at ‘Iolani. website:

“4.  George Steed on airplane painting Bonanza style. (10 minutes) 8:10 – 8:20

“5.  EAA 406 business 8:20 – 8:45

 “Join Zoom Meeting

“Meeting ID: 846 9685 1256
“Passcode: 243020”

We hope we don’t crash the net with an over abundant ZOOM turnout.  It’s a chance to see the tropical source of the “Pineapple Express” inundating much of the west coast.

Comments 1

  1. The e-Hawk team did a great job!
    I wish other high schools would encourage students to start similarly amazing projects….

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