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Tests To Start on NASA's First All-Electric Experimental Plane

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By    |   Friday, 04 October 2019 12:18 PM

NASA is set to begin testing its first all-electric experimental aircraft.

The plane, called the X-57 Maxwell, was brought to the space agency’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in California on Wednesday. The testing was announced by NASA and detailed in a story by Fox News.

"The X-57 Mod II aircraft delivery to NASA is a significant event, marking the beginning of a new phase in this exciting electric X-plane project,” said X-57 Project Manager Tom Rigney in a statement.

“With the aircraft in our possession, the X-57 team will soon conduct extensive ground testing of the integrated electric propulsion system to ensure the aircraft is airworthy. We plan to rapidly share valuable lessons learned along the way as we progress toward flight testing, helping to inform the growing electric aircraft market.”

The space agency noted that experimental plane ”features the replacement of traditional combustion engines on a baseline Tecnam P2006T aircraft, with electric cruise motors.”

And it said: “A goal of the X-57 project is to help develop certification standards for emerging electric aircraft markets, including urban air mobility vehicles, which also rely on complex distributed electric propulsion systems. NASA will share the aircraft’s electric-propulsion-focused design and airworthiness process with regulators and industry, which will advance certification approaches for aircraft utilizing distributed electric propulsion”.

The plane will be put through a series of ground tests, followed by taxi tests. If all checks out, it will eventually begin flight tests.

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NASA is set to begin testing its first all-electric experimental aircraft.
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Friday, 04 October 2019 12:18 PM
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