CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Pilot Magazine today CLICK HERE

Battery-powered manned helicopter flies for the first time

PUBLISHED: 12:11 26 October 2016 | UPDATED: 12:26 26 October 2016

The electric R44's batteries are carried in an underslung palette

The electric R44's batteries are carried in an underslung palette

Archant

Electric flight gets a boost by California-based Tier 1 Engineering’s test flights of the Robinson R44 chopper in late September

The battery-powered Robinson helicopter was airborne at Los Alamitos Army Airfield for five minutes, reaching 400ft and 80kt.

The modified R44 is equipped with 700V, 100Ah Brammo lithium polymer batteries and two Rinehart Motion Systems three-phase permanent magnet synchronous electric motors stacked together to provide redundancy in the event of a motor failure.

The range of the experimental prototype is 30nm, endurance twenty minutes, but Tier 1’s goal is to develop a battery-powered rotorcraft with a 600lb payload.

The company is developing the craft for Lung Biotechnology PBC, based in Silver Spring, Maryland, which intends to produce an electric-powered helicopter for distributing manufactured transplant organs to hospitals, with much less noise and carbon footprint than current technology.

___________________

You may also like:

Robinson R66 passes long-awaited snow test

FAA Approves Robinson R44 Cadet Helicopter

More from News

Friday, November 16, 2018

The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) today published its 2018 third quarter aircraft shipments and billings report

Read more
Friday, November 16, 2018

Take yourself back to the 2018 STIHL National Championship Air Races at Reno with these highlights of the six Gold Races

Read more
Friday, November 16, 2018

The Duxford-based team was initially formed for just one show but now they are planning to do more in 2019

Read more
Friday, November 9, 2018

“This is the first serial-hybrid electric plane in the world with two electrically powered free-stream propellers and one combustion engine.”

Read more
Friday, November 9, 2018

Organisers have released an exciting line-up of pilots who will compete for the Air Race 1 China Cup title at Hannan Municipal Airport in Wuhan City, China

Read more
Friday, November 9, 2018

“Oriens Aviation offers an extensive maintenance facility at Biggin Hill, so its smart hangar was the perfect backdrop to showcase our amazing, one month-old Super Versatile Jet in the UK.”

Read more
Friday, October 26, 2018

Celebrated US air racing pilot Darryl Greenamyer died on 1 October at the age of 82

Read more
Friday, October 26, 2018

At October’s National Business Aviation Association Convention in Orlando Aerion Corporation predicted that its AS2 supersonic business jet will fly in 2023 and make its first transatlantic flight on 24 October that year on the 20th anniversary of the last commercial flight by Concorde

Read more
Friday, October 26, 2018

Re-live all the action from 2018’s Old Buckenham Airshow with this action-packed DVD featuring over an hour of exclusive footage

Read more
Friday, October 19, 2018

Key sub-systems have now successfully passed their preliminary design review, paving the way to the manufacturing of key components

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Pilot weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most Read


Subscribe or buy Pilot Magazine