Enabling Technologies For Practical Electric Flight
Santa Clara, CA, USA
Great America Ballroom K Track 8
09:20 - 09:45
Pessimistic assessments of the viability of practical electric flight tend to dominate, but derive from the power and energy storage requirements of conventional aircraft designs. However, when new, optimized architectures are allowed to emerge in response to fundamental differences introduced by changes in fuel source and the prime mover, existing motors, controllers, batteries, capacitors, and fuel cells become not only viable, but highly competitive when more advanced aerostructural integrations are considered. A new era of quiet, comfortable, affordable on-demand mobility is in sight. First principles for the design of practical electric aircraft are considered in light of recent aerodynamic initiatives and computational capabilities. Emerging breakthroughs in fluid science (volumetric design algorithms and open thermodynamics), systems integration, and electropropulsive motor relationships have led to new architectures and promising experimental integrations that reduce energy requirements for electric propulsion at required flight weights, using presently available storage technologies.
Synergy is an airplane designed to safely fly one to six people directly from town to town, in less time and at less cost than airliners or automobiles. Its innovative technologies provide the key to economical regional transportation in the speed range between supercars and commercial jets.