The Anonymous Widower

The First Flight Of A Commercial Electric Passenger Plane

This video has just been published.

Electricity is the future of aviation!

Initially, it will be smaller planes up to nine seats, like this DHC-2 Beaver and the Eviation Alice.

But I believe that we’ll be seeing Airbus A318-sized electric airliners by 2030.

December 11, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | 2 Comments

The Electric Aviation Revolution Will Be Televised … By MagniX And Harbour Air

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on GeekWire.

These are a few points from the article.

  • The target date is December 11th.
  • The first flight could be delayed by weather.
  • Harbour Air’s CEO, Greg McDougall, will put his money where his mouth is and take the first test flight.
  • The first test flight will only be a few minutes.

I wish Greg McDougall all the best!

December 4, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Magnix Revs Up Electric Motors For Harbour Air Seaplane Flight Tests In December

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Geek Wi8re.

The article explains a lot about the state of play in the electric aeroplane market, with two examples possibly starting commercial service in the next few years.

MagniX are the company, who build the electric motors and surely, efficient, lightweight motors are key to flying electric.

November 16, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Harbour Air Installs Electric Engine Into ‘Prototype’ Seaplane

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on Pique Magazine.

It is as must-read as it gives the thoughts of engineers working on Harbour Air‘s project to create an electric seaplabe, by the conversion of a DHC-2 Beaver.

Will I see an electric aircraft in my lifetime?

If ten years ago, someone had asked me, if battery-powered trains would appear in my lifetime, I would have been sceptical.

But in the last four years, I have ridden in at least two battery powered trains and lived to tell the tale!

So I not only feel that I will see a news film of a small electric airliner carrying around a dozen passengers, but I suspect I’ll be able to fly in one in the UK.

Surely, the ultimate destination for an electric aircraft would be Barra Airport, where airliners land on a sandy tidal beach.

November 9, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Harbour Air Set To Become The First All-Electric Airline In The World

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on Aerotime Hub.

This sounds a tough call, but someone will do it, even if it happens sometime in the second half of the 21st Century.

This is taken from the Wikipedia entry for Harbour Air Seaplanes.

Today, Harbour Air refers to itself as the world’s largest all-seaplane airline and became North America’s first carbon neutral airline.

They have a fleet of forty seaplanes and Wikipedia doesn’t list any incidents.

Wikipedia also says this.

In March of 2019, Harbour Air announced a partnership with magniX to electrify the entire Harbour Air fleet. The two companies are planning to begin tests in late 2019; the first converted aircraft will be a DHC-2 Beaver.

Could this well-respected Canadian seaplane operator achieve its goal of an all-electric airline?

I feel that they will certainly achieve a successful test flight, although as countless aircraft have shown, time scales may not be as originally planned.

I’ll start with the DHC-2 Beaver, one of which will be converted to the prototype electric aircraft.

  • First flight of the design was on the 16th of August 1947, which as it was the day I was born, must be a good omen!
  • Over 1,600 were built during twenty years of production.
  • In the past they have been flown by various military and civil operators.

In the Wikipedia entry, under Operational History, this is a paragraph.

The original Wasp Jr radial engine of the Beaver is long out of production, so repair parts are getting harder to find. Some aircraft conversion stations have addressed this problem by replacing the piston engine with a turboprop engine such as the PT6. The added power and lighter installed weight, together with greater availability of kerosene fuel instead of high-octane aviation gasoline, make this a desirable modification, but at a high financial cost.

Consider.

  • Fitting of new engines  has been regularly done to aircraft to extend their operational lives or to increase performance or reliability.
  • So why not change the power unit for environmental reasons?
  • The MagniX electric motor chosen for the trial appears to offer a weight saving.

I believe that provided the mathematics and engineering are correct, that the Wasp Junior piston engine, which dates from 1929, could be replaced with a modern electric motor of the right power level.

How many extra passengers would be drawn to fly in a zero-carbon electric aircraft, which was powered by electricity from renewable sources?

November 2, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment