Eviation’s “Alice” 11-seat Prototype Made First Flight

On 27 September 2022 “Alice” electric commuter prototype designed and produced by Eviation, the electric commuter airplane startup, tooke off for the first time from Grant County International Airport in Moses Lake, Washington, USA. The first flight happened in early morning and lasted about 8 minutes at 3700 feet.

Alice is designed to carry 9 passengers and two pilots in short-haul commuter configuration, 6 passengers in VIP executive cabine configuration and can carry up to 1.1 ton in cargo configuration with 7.5 ton gross weight. Eviation says that Alice will reach 500 miles (800 kilometers) at 400km per hour.

Alice prototype’s maiden flight. photo courtesy: Eviation

Eviation first unveiled Alice full-size mockup at Paris Airshow in 2019, but the company changed the design and revealed the new design in Jule 2021. Eviation expects to receive Part 23 certificate from FAA in 2025 and begins delivery to customers which have piled up over 130 orders with different configurations.

Kittyhawk is to wind down

Kittyhawk, the eVTOL startup company that Google founder Larry Page founded in 2011, announced on its social media that it will “wind down.” Though it is a vague message, this post was soon interpreted that Kittyhawk is shutting down.

On one hand, the message does indicate that Kittyhawk will cease operation. Over the years, Kittyhawk has certainly established its status as the pioneer and leading player in the eVTOL and electric aviation community by designing and test flying six generations of eVTOL demonstrators which, by conventional wisdom of aviation, is a very impressive outcome.

Heaviside tilt-rotor eVTOL demonstrator is currently the only project of Kittyhawk

On another hand,it may make good sense from business perspective for Kittyhawk to concentrate resources on Cora, the eVTOL project which was spun off in 2019 from Kittyhawk to form a joint venture called Wisk with Boeing which invested in $450 millions this year.After all Wisk has publicly announced that it will unveil the four-seat Cora new design in October which will apply for certification and finally be intended for commercial operation. Compared with Cora, Kittyhawk has canceled the Part 103 ultralight category Flyer single-seat eVTOL in 2020 and currently only has Heaviside single-seat eVTOL demonstrator in hand which the company does not specify a clear goal of development.  

Wisk, the joint venture between Kittyhawk and Boeing, is currently test flying a two-seat lift and cruise eVTOL demonstrator Cora and is going to unveil a four-seat new design intended for certification in October

Regardless of the final fate of Kittyhawk, there is no doubt that it has left a deep dent in eVTOL history with its efforts and aircraft and will see its legency carried on in Wisk.

Pie Aeronefs- The Magpie on approach for AERO 2023

Willi Tacke editor of e-flight-Journal together with Pie Aeronefs ceo Marc Umbricht.

Yesterday Willi Tacke,the Founder of e-flight-Journal, visited Pie Aeronefs in the little Village La Sarraz in French Switzerland near Lausanne. The company founded by Marc Umbricht in 2019 is about to develop several electric aircraft from the scratch.

Electric Raceplane UR-1

The First will be the UR 1 a single seated electric aircraft supposed to be flying in the Air Race E.

“This Aircraft will be our Proof of concept for many details and – if all goes well, it will also be our first product sold as Kit, “stated Marc in the interview. It is planned to show the prototype at the AERO 2023.

  • The second aircraft that the company will release is the UG-2 Bullfinch which is supposed to take off in 2024. The UG-2 Bouvreuil is a 2 seat Kitplane which promises performance like a cessna 152 with a range up to 500 NM purely on battery power.

Read more in the next E-Flight-Journal PDF edition.

Boeing and Wisk Unveil Concept of Operations for Urban Air Mobility

ARLINGTON, Va. – Boeing and its joint venture partner Wisk today released a roadmap for transitioning to a future where automated and uncrewed aircraft can safely carry passengers and cargo in urban and suburban areas. The concept of operations lays out the technology, regulatory and social recommendations needed to deploy Urban Air Mobility (UAM) in the United States and integrate it into the national airspace system.

“We’re working to enable a future of aerospace that is safe, sustainable and at scale. Uncrewed operations will be fundamental to realizing that vision, and we have to exceed the current safety standards for the air transportation system,” said Brian Yutko, Boeing Vice President .

More at: https://wisk.aero/news/press-release/uam-conops/

Elerctrifly-In Bern 2022 Success & perhaps new ambitions for record-setting pilots

Record-setting pilot Bertrand Piccrad in the Cockpit of the eMagic at the electrifly-in- Bern on 11.09.2022 “I would really like to fly it ASAP. ” he said
And Piccrad (right) together with the eMagic developer Michael Kügelgen and the German record-setting pilot Klaus Ohlmann (sitting) who holds more than 20 world records of gliders and electric Aircraft

The 6th Swiss Electrifly-In – which for the first time took place at the airport Bern– was a full success. Interesting electric aircraft, new electric and e-flight-projects and very interested visitors. The organizers around Sandra Dubach have done a great work with an easy access for the public and with the symposium, and the organisation of the Challenge.

So the exhibitors who came were satisfied and hope that in the show in upcoming years there will be even more projects from Europe and specially from Swiss as even some well known swiss projects did not find their way to this great event in the swiss capital.

“Some interesting Meetings and efficient networking options,” said Tobias Bretzel, Head of the AERO Fair Friedrichshafen who, like Flying Pages, is one of the partners of the swiss event.

One of the Meetings between record-setting pilot Klaus Ohlman the “around the word flyer” Bertrand Piccrad and the German eVTOL Designer Michael Kügelgen. Bothe wanted to know when they can fly around the world with the single seater eVTOL, and if there is a chance for record flights in the new eVTOL class. Both altready tried out the cockpit.

Klaus Ohlmann trying out the eMagic cockpit.

More Info. of some of the projects here on e-flight-Journal in the next days.

Chinese eVTOL Startup Volant Unveiled Full-scale Prototype

The Chinese eVTOL startup Volant Aerotech today revealed the full-scale prototype of their five-seat (one pilot and four passengers) eVTOL VE25 X1 which has “lift+cruise” configuration with four lift propellors and two pusher propellors for cruise.

Volant Aerotech was founded in Shanghai in mid-2021 by a group of aviation veterans from COMAC (the Chinese equivalent of Boeing and Airbus) and another Chinese eVTOL startup Autoflight as well as the Chinese subsidiaries of Airbus, GE, Honeywell and Collins. The company test flew a 1/3 sub-scale demonstrator in September 2021. The company raised seed fund in “millions” USD and closed pre-A series fundraising in June this year over 100 millions RMB (15 millions USD).

Geely Unveiled 5-seat eVTOL Prototype

Aerofugia, the aviation subsidiary of Geely Auto unveiled their TF-2 eVTOL full size prototype which has 5-seat and tilt rotor configuration.

it appears that the four rear rotor/props are in fixed position for lift and two of the four front rotor/props are tilt for lift and cruise and there’s another pusher prop in the rear dedicated for cruise. Aerofugia plans to make the first flight by the year end.

Geely is the owner of Terrafugia and an equity investor of Volocopter and formed a joint-venture in China with Volocopter in Sep. 2021.

eVTOL & eSTOL in Oshkosh

At this years Airventure Oshkosh eVTOL was not the focus but the Opener Blackfly made its first flight in front of a big crowd at the Wednesday night Airshow and several other new designs were shown in different stages.

More images and background info from Oshkosh 2022 later and in the next issue of e-flight-journal – the magazin.

Blackfly taking off right after the F 33

Volkswagen China Unveiled eVTOL Design

Today at Sunward Aircraft’s factory in Hunan province, China, Volkswagen China’s CEO Dr.Stephan Wöllenstein unveiled the full-size mockup of their eVTOL design named “V.Mo”.

According to VW China, the design will build on existing autonomous driving solutions and battery technology to create zero-emission mobility. The prototype is a lift+cruise configuration with a length of 11.2 meters and a wingspan of 10.6 meters, eight propellors dedicated to vertical take-off and landing and two propellers for horizontal propulsion.

VW China developed the design together with Sunward Aircraft which is the largest producer of light sport airplane (LSA) in China with over 100 sales per year and is also producing small helicopter and multicopter unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV)

Sunward’s SA60L “Aurora” light sport airplane

VW China intends to further optimize the design, and plans to test fly a demonstrator in the second half of this year, and to test fly the improved prototype at the end of summer 2023. This pure electric, fully autonomous flying eVTOL aircraft will eventually be able to carry four passengers and luggage for up to 200 kilometers range.

Volkswagen China To Unveil eVTOL Design

On 27 July 2022 Volkswagen’s Chinese subsidiary will unveil their eVTOL design. VW China released a short teaser video today for the event.

VW China has been studying eVTOL project for a while. According to the teaser video, it seems that the design is a lift+cruise configuration with a canard. It is said in the Chinese eVTOL community that VW China partners with a Chinese light airplane manufactuer for this eVTOL development. What’s VW China’s plan for this eVTOL? We will keep you updated when more details are available.