Skydweller Seeks Ultra-Persistence

Dean Sigler Batteries, Electric Powerplants, Fuel Cells, Hydrogen Fuel, Solar Power, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Skydweller Aero, an adaptation of Solar Impulse technologies, is working with the U. S. Navy to provide ultra-persistent flight capabilities.  It’s using Solar Impulse Two, for which Skydweller purchased the assets and intellectual property rights.  Being flown in Spain at this time, the aircraft’s 2,900 square feet of solar cells provide two kilowatts of power, and may be augmented by hydrogen fuel cells in future. In Spain Skydweller founders John Parkes and Robert Miller have headquarters in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, but are performing flight tests in Spain, coordinating efforts with the University of Castilla-La Mancha (UCLM). After successfully completing ground tests that checked the structure and control systems, Skydweller works toward crafting the software that will guide it on unpiloted …

Look!  Up in the Sky!  At Oshkosh

Dean Sigler Batteries, Electric Powerplants, Sky Taxis, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Two different machines, with vastly different purposes and unique looks, are flying electrically above Wittman Field for the worlds’ biggest airshow.  The Experimental Aircraft Association’s gathering, having skipped a year because of the pandemic, is back with nearly twice the number of attendees.  It’s a crowd ready to be rocked. Volocopter Helena Treeck, head of public relations for Volocopter GmbH, is on scene at AirVenture, not only promoting her company’s machines, but granting interviews and reporting herself. She shares the experience.  “The crewed Volocopter 2X took off at 2:45 PM CST for a 4-minute flight at ~164 feet and a top speed of 18 mph over Wittman Regional Airport as part of EAA’s AirVenture aviation celebration. Event attendees were able …

Amazon PrimeAir FAA Approved

Dean Sigler Announcements, Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

St. Paul gave us the idea that there are several heavens, a layered set of spiritual levels increasingly sublime with altitude.  That’s why there’s a “seventh heaven” of love, tranquility and bliss.  Then there are earthly regulations to consider. The FAA’s approval meets with Amazon’s approval.  “We’re excited about Prime Air — a future delivery system from Amazon designed to safely get packages to customers in 30 minutes or less using unmanned aerial vehicles, also called drones. Prime Air has great potential to enhance the services we already provide to millions of customers by providing rapid parcel delivery that will also increase the overall safety and efficiency of the transportation system.” Such services will be limited to the range available …

Why It Might Be a Good Idea to Register Drones

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

At some point in the not-too-distant future, all those Christmas-gift quadrotors and Star Wars replica drones will be joined by medium-size burger bombers and two-hour-guaranteed delivery aerial vehicles for fast food restaurants and on-line retailers sending their wares to a landing zone near your front door, or perhaps the roof of your apartment.  This probably isn’t what Alfred Lord Tennyson had in mind when he wrote: ” For I dipt into the future, far as human eye could see, Saw the Vision of the world, and all the wonder that would be; “Saw the heavens fill with commerce, argosies of magic sails, Pilots of the purple twilight dropping down with costly bales;”   (From Locksley Hall, 1835) There are already rules …

China Permits Two-Seat Electric Aircraft

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 3 Comments

Jane Zhanf of Silk Wings Aviation (see note), an aircraft consulting firm, commented on an earlier post about the RX1E, an airplane designed by Shenyang University students and demonstrated at two airshows over the last two years.  Similar to the Yuneec (GreenWings) E430, it is a totally different design. “CAAC (Civil Aviation Administration of China) just awarded[a]TDA (Type Design Approval) to them! “By the way, Yuneec E430 is not widely known in China, not an excuse for the wrong claim of being #1 from China though.  (Editor’s Note: The E430 is being developed by GreenWings, now based in California.  It uses a Yuneec motor.) “Given FAA and EASA don’t support electric SLSA (Special Light Sport Aircraft – allowed to be used …