The Airbus-sponsored "eGenius" electric concept demonstrator aircraft today performed its maiden flight in a programme to examine the long-term potential of electricity as a major onboard energy source for air transport.
Goals of this 20-minute flight – which was conducted from Mindelheim, Bavaria, Germany – included the checkout of its handling qualities and an initial validation of the concept’s unique propulsion system, which pushes the limits of electric flight to a power level of 60kW.
The electrically-powered “eGenius” has a maximum takeoff weight of 850 kg. and is able to operate over a distance of 400 km. at cruise speeds of up to 235 km. per hour. With wingspan of 16.86 metres, the aircraft features a wide fuselage design that accommodates the two seats in a side-by-side arrangement.
Designed by the Institute of Aircraft Design at the University of Stuttgart, Germany, the “eGenius” is supported by Airbus in the framework of the manufacturer’s overall effort to reduce emissions and develop a greener aviation industry.
Data collected during the “eGenius” aircraft’s maiden flight will be analysed by Airbus’ Future Projects teams to further develop the technology and better understand its opportunities.