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Sonex Electric Airplane – hum, crackle, swoop and soar


The Sonex Electric Airplane is a concept plane which runs on batteries. That’s right, you can recharge it from your wall socket and poodle off as and when you feel the need. Clever eh? Two things. First, there’s no way I’d trust any teeny tiny engine like that to keep me aloft at 5000 feet for any length of time and two, a 24 hour charging cycle for an hour’s flight time? Riiight!


And it’s significant that while there’s a fancy video, there’s no footage of the thing actually working. It just sits there looking pretty. And yellow. Nope, sorry I’m going to stick with terra firmata for the time being. [via The Raw Feed]


  • The electric motor is a new idea, but there are well over 100 Sonex aircraft flying around the world. It was designed by Pete Buck, who is a lead engineer at Lockheed Martin’s Skunkworks.

    This powerplant is part of their e-flight initiative, a project that is examining ethanol, electricity and increased efficiency in an effort to keep sport flying somewhat affordable in the face of rising fuel costs. After all, if teenagers don’t pick up the sport, there will be a smaller pool of future professional pilots.

    Serious stuff by a serious company.

  • I fly electric R/C planes (3 to 6 foot wingspan, up to 1/2 hp motors pulling 50amps), so this is just a natural extention of what I do. For many private pilots that just want to go up for a half-an-hour on the weekends to putt around, electrics will eventually be VERY practical and MUCH cheaper than current planes.

    (However right now we are having some fun problems with lithium batterys catching fire and exploding, so I’d leave this type of manned plane to the experimental boys for a while….)

  • you'd be a fool or an oil company representative to disbelieve in this type of technology.

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