Manufacturers are racing to design the world’s first high-speed, long-distance electric jet, and some of their prototypes are pushing the bounds of aviation.
Drawing on a detailed roundup of electric jet and private jet innovation by private jet charter provider Air Charter Service (ACS), here’s a brief summary of three of the best.
The Airbus E-Fan
The tiny, 21.9 ft long E-Fan jet, made by Airbus, uses electrical power alone to fuel its two 30 kW electric motor fans. The two-seater prototype is powered by banks of lithium-ion cells in the wings. A solely electrical aircraft has traditionally been considered impractical (or even impossible) but Airbus has disproved that claim with this innovative little jet, which is noiseless, high efficiency, and creates no emissions in flight.
The Lilium Jet
Though still in prototype form, the Lilium Jet, designed by a German startup, is creating waves in the aviation industry, having recently raised $90 million USD in seed funding. The elegant two-seater is noiseless, efficient and already capable of travelling 186 miles at a maximum cruise speed of 186.4 mph, with vertical take-off and landing. Next, Lilium aims to create a family-size model which can cover large distances quickly.
The Zunum Aero
A hybrid jet for 50 passengers, the Zunum Aero combines an electrical system with a fuel-powered generator. This allows 75% less noise, plus 40-80% lower fuel consumption. By retaining a fuel-powered engine, the Aero boasts a significantly greater range than an electric jet, but also a commercially viable passenger capacity and numerous other benefits associated with an electric engine.
To learn more about private jets and innovation, visit Air Charter Service.