Thu, Jul 26, 2012
Aircraft Patterned After Long EZ
A 16 minute flight over California's Mojave Desert last Thursday ended with a new speed record for an electric plane and a dead stick landing. The speed? 202.6 mph in level flight was achieved by electric vehicle pioneer Chip Yates. The dead stick landing? Also achieved by Chip Yates after "a dead cell killed propulsion after the record run" according to a rerport on the website WIRED.
Yates' aircraft, a Long-ESA, is patterned after the well known Long EZ design of Burt Rutan. The Long EZ commonlyu cruises at over 200 mph using normal gasoline powered engines and already holds a number of speed and endurance records thanks to its efficient design. The record setting flight was the first time an electric aircraft has broken the 200 mph speed. Yates' first flight in the aircraft had only occurred earlier on the same day.
Yates already owns the record for the fastest electric motorcycle,topping 196 mph on the Bonneville Salt Flats last year.
A new speed record is nice but that's not Yates' ultimate goal. More speed runs are planned andhe's hoping those runs help develop the technology needed for both longer endurance flights and a more practical electric aircraft. His ultimate goal? To make the world's first non-stop trans-Atlantic flight in 2014.
Yates will be appearing at EAA's Airventure 2012 in Oshkosh, this week.
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