NASA Debuts Personal Electric VSTOL Aircraft Concept

Puffin electric aircraft would have range of 80 km on current generation of lithium iron phosphate batteries.

Published: 20-Jan-2010

A super-quiet, hover-capable aircraft design, NASA's experimental one-man Puffin could show just how much electric propulsion can transform our ideas of flight. It looks like nothing less than a flying suit or a jet pack with a cockpit.

On the ground, the Puffin is designed to stand on its tail, which splits into four legs to help serve as landing gear. As a pilot prepares to take off, flaps on the wings would tilt to deflect air from the 2.3-meter-wide propeller rotors upward, keeping the plane on the ground until it was ready to fly and preventing errant gusts from tipping it over. The Puffin would rise, hover and then lean over to fly horizontally, with the pilot lying prone as if in a glider. When landing, the extending spring legs would support the 3.7-meter-long, 4.1-meter-wingspan craft, which is designed with carbon-fiber composites to weigh in at 135 kilograms, not including 45 kilograms of rechargeable lithium phosphate batteries.


Alpi Aviation Pioneer 300 will be equipped with fuel cell-powered electric drive.

Based on the Alpi Pioneer 300, the Skyspark is expected to have a flight endurance of 35 minutes.

AerVironment Gossamer Albatross crosses English Channel on June 12, 1979.

The 70-lb aircraft completed the 26-mile flight in 2 hours, 49 minutes, winning its second Kremer Prize.

IEEE concept for electric-powered jetliner of the future

Group of experts from the IEEE are investigating a blended wing body jetliner powered by superconducting electric propulsion system.


blog comments powered by Disqus