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Electric power step by step taking a center stage in aviation

Dal Kikin
April 15, 2019

The electric flight was one of the big topics at the AERO 2019 last week. Dr. Frank Anton, Executive Vice President of eAircraft at Siemens, says that pilots and designers are finally saying goodbye to "horsepower" for the performance of an electric motor.

When Dr. Anton and his counterpart at Airbus started the project, the whole world still believed that electric flight made no sense.

A software suite developed by Siemens that allowed the team to design, model and test every single detail of the proposed motor before manufacturing a single physical part. “With such a complex problem where everything has to work together, simulating the whole propulsion system was the only method we could use to rethink our approach to creating a system in a completely different way.”

 “My goal is to hand over electric propulsion to the next generation in order to make aviation continue on this planet. Because if we don’t it will disappear,” says Dr. Anton.

The electric flight opens a new chapter in the history of aviation. The podium discussions and lectures on this topic were very well attended and various manufacturers presented their projects of new electric or hybrid electric powered aircraft for the first time. Dr. Anton asked in a panel discussion, to finally separate in the designation of the performance of an electric motor of the wrong name horsepower (PS). The power of electric motors is stated in kilowatts (kW).

Although the term PS is still firmly anchored in general use - even in pilot circles - the unit kilowatts have been used for years for the performance of internal combustion engines. Although there is a conversion formula (1 hp = 1.3596 kW), with the advent of electric drives, pilots should not find it difficult and time to use the correct physical units for the new drive.

The endurance of the prototype of the F2e by Flight Design is about 40 minutes, in the production aircraft, the battery capacity for two hours of flight time rich.

 "We were very surprised and met with a great deal of interest from the visitors for our electric F2e. Above all, qualified customers have informed themselves about this aircraft," said Matthias Betsch, founder of Flight Design, who presented the new aircraft family F2 / F4 for the first time at the AERO, where there will also be a family member with electric drive.