Why aren’t there electric airplanes yet?

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According to (This article and its images were originally posted on Science + Technology – The Conversation November 27, 2018 at 06:51AM.)

(Cover Image)
Building an electric airplane is very different from building an electric car or truck. Venkat Viswanathan, CC BY-ND

As electric cars and trucks appear increasingly on U.S. highways, it raises the question: When will commercially viable electric vehicles take to the skies? There are a number of ambitious efforts to build electric-powered airplanes, including regional jets and planes that can cover longer distances. Electrification is starting to enable a type of air travel that many have been hoping for, but haven’t seen yet – a flying car.

A key challenge in building electric aircraft involves how much energy can be stored in a given amount of weight of the on-board energy source. Although the best batteries store about 40 times less energy per unit of weight than jet fuel, a greater share of their energy is available to drive motion. Ultimately, for a given weight, jet fuel contains about 14 times more usable energy than a state-of-the-art lithium-ion battery.

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This article and images were originally posted on [Science + Technology – The Conversation] November 27, 2018 at 06:51AM. Credit to the original author and Science + Technology – The Conversation | ESIST.T>G>S Recommended Articles Of The Day.

 

 

 

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