The first electric-powered airplane has flown in China. On display at EAA AirVenture next month will be the new airplane from China, the Yuneec International E430, which flew for the first time on June 12. It has since flown at least two more times, and is now being shipped to the U.S. so it can be ready to fly at the biggest air show in the world which is held at Oshkosh. (There is a solar powered aircraft in Switzerland that will run on batteries but it has yet to make its maiden flight.)
Test pilot Shun Xun said the E430 has plenty of power and the ride is exceptionally quiet and smooth. Takeoff speed is 40 mph and top flight speed about 93 mph.
The Yuneec company hopes to certify the E430 as an experimental aircraft for sale in the United States, according to EAA. It’s a two-seat design with a long wing, a V-tail and all-composite construction.
AVWeb reported that Bye Energyis collaboratively designing and developing energy storage devices and battery management systems with Porous Power Technologies.
These batteries will be used by Yuneec International on the E430 which it is claimed is the world’s first ‘Electric Aircraft’ designed for commerical production although it is, in truth, very little and only useful, perhaps, for recreational use..
At an airfield North of Shanghai the Yuneec International E430 Electric aircraft two test flights of around 15 minutes and did a series of basic test manoeuvres and a maximum height of 300m (975ft) was reached during the flights.
The E430 will now be shipped to the USA for test flying in the USA prior to its first public display on the Yuneec stand at the EAA AirVenture 2009 at Oshkosh, the world’s largest aviation show.