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Sun, Mar 10, 2024

Ampaire Acquires Magpie Aviation

Electric Caravan Developer Snags Glider Company

Ampaire Incorporated, the firm behind efforts to 'electrify' the Cessna 208 Caravan, has acquired Magpie Aviation Inc, another electric aviation developer.

Magpie's tech seems deceptively simple in the abstract, being based on "aerotowing", the simple act of using a tow aircraft to extend the range of shorter-legged aircraft. They have planned to make the most of a battery-powered, fully electric tow aircraft that would provide motive force to a connected cargo or commuter aircraft using hybrid or electric power, adding much greater range and endurance to early marks of "sustainable" aircraft. Ampaire was quick to demonstrate the idea, hooking up an electric glider to their electric "Eco Caravan".

From here, the conjoined companies will continue trying to automate and modernize the towing system to the point it can turn some heads in the commercial realm. They've completed automated tows in the past, but they'll need some very polished systems if they want to gain consumer confidence - the average passenger likes eco-friendliness, but it's probably not going to inspire much confidence if their long-haul 'green' flight has to be towed up into the skies like an old jalopy. 

"With this acquisition, Ampaire anticipates further revenue growth across both commercial and defense sectors while simultaneously enhancing the capabilities and mission scope of our existing hybrid aircraft," said Kevin Noertker, CEO of Ampaire. "Building upon our recent acquisition of Talyn Air, the addition of Magpie exemplifies our deliberate approach to integrating pivotal companies and assets on our path to accelerate our leadership in electrified aviation. Expect more compelling advancements throughout the year as Ampaire remains steadfast in our commitment to advancing our growth strategy."

"We founded Magpie because we believe electrified aircraft have a pivotal role to play in the future of aviation," added Damon Vander Lind, CEO of Magpie. "I am thrilled to see this vision continuing to move forward under Ampaire's banner. Not only does this lift the prospects of civilian electric aircraft and meaningful emission reductions in the future, it also helps Ampaire to serve military customers with their needs, right now."



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