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All-electric aircraft flies

written by australianaviation.com.au | September 3, 2010

The world’s first all-electrically powered aircraft made its first flight from Le Bourget airport near Paris on September 2.

The four engine, all-eletric Cri-Cri aerobatic aircraft was jointly developed by EADS Innovation Works, Aero Composites Saintonge and the Green Cri-Cri Association, and its maiden flight lasted for seven minutes before the aircraft returned to Le Bourget.

“This aircraft flies very smoothly, much more quietly than a plane with conventional propulsion,” said Didier Esteyne, who piloted the Cri-Cri. “But we are still at the beginning and have a lot to learn. We are allowed to start aerobatic manoeuvres only after five hours of flight and 15 landings.”

The Cri-Cri combines a number of technologies including composites, brushless electric motors with counter-rotating propellers, and high energy density Lithium batteries, as a testbed for the integration of such low emissions technologies into other aircraft programs.

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