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Tue, Jun 11, 2019

Rolls-Royce Targets 2020 For Electric Airplane Speed Record Attempt

ACCEL Airplane Expected To Reach Speeds In Excess Of 260 Knots

The Rolls-Royce anticipates that its ACCEL ... “Accelerating the Electrification of Flight” ... airplane will attempt to break the speed record for an electric airplane next year, and the plane is also looking like a contender in the Reno Air Race.

The ACCEL is currently undergoing flight trials at Gloucestershire airport outside Cheltenham, England. The program is intended to pioneer a third wave of aviation in support of Rolls-Royce’s strategy to champion electrification, according to Rolls-Royce.

ACCEL is partly funded by the UK government and involves a host of partners including electric motor and controller manufacturer YASA and the aviation start-up Electroflight.

The team brings together some of the top minds from the world of Formula E racing to help design the e-racer. "This plane will be powered by a state-of-the-art electrical system and the most powerful battery ever built for flight," said Matheu Parr, ACCEL Project Manager for Rolls-Royce. "In the year ahead, we’re going to demonstrate its abilities in demanding test environments before going for gold in 2020 from a landing strip on the Welsh coastline."

Accel has the most energy-dense battery pack ever assembled for an aircraft, providing enough power to fly 200 miles (London to Paris) on a single charge.

Green Car Reports reports that the three motors on the ACCEL will designed to produce a combined 500 horsepower driving a low-rpm propeller. RR says the drivetrain is 90 percent efficient.

The current speed record for an electric airplane is 182.485 knots set by Siemens in 2017, according to the report.

(Image provided by Rolls-Royce)

FMI: www.rolls-royce.com/media/our-stories/innovation/2018/introducing-accel.aspx
Source report

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