Brit Liggett

Cessna Engineering a 100% Electric Aircraft

by , 07/29/10

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Cessna is flying into the future of aviation ahead of their competitors with plans to build and release a 100% electric aircraft. They’ve coupled with Bye Energy, Inc., a company that specializes in all-electric planes, to build an engine for their proof-of-concept 172 Skyhawk. The company hopes to take off in their first electric model by year end.

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The classic Cessna 172 is the quintessential lightweight aircraft — as well as the highest sold plane ever. Cessna has delivered more than 43,000 172 Skyhawk planes in their history, which makes it a perfect place to start for the first commercial all-electric airplane. The Skyhawk is a four-seat, single engine aircraft that was first built in 1956. Only minor changes have been made in its light-weight construction since then and Cessna hopes just to insert an electric propulsion system — where there now is a gas powered one — in their new version.

The companies hope that their joint venture will be in the air by year end and are hopeful that the transition will be quick and easy. With the weight of most aircrafts being a major obstacle in making them run on electric engines, the Cessna Skyhawk seems to be the perfect choice for going green. As the most popular single model in aviation history, Cessna’s move to electricity is a big step for the aviation world. “Cessna’s support of the electric and electric-hybrid program is vital to moving general aviation into the future,” noted George Bye, CEO of Bye Energy. We’re looking forward to these zippy green flyers and hope when they come on board they’ll take a big chunk out of the oil-eating aviation pie.

+ Cessna

+ The all-electric Cessna 172

+ Bye Energy

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2 Comments

  1. ceblythe July 29, 2010 at 8:08 pm

    Ok what powers the electric motor? 300lbs of fuel cells would be
    more waight than 1 person or both tanks of gas.

  2. SUMPTHISCOM July 29, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    Finally, Cessna comes up with a fix for all their water tankers. Since the first high-wing Cessna the problem of a lack of positive detection of water in the fuel tanks persists. Both parties charged with oversight, NTSB and FAA have ignored the indicated design flaw for decades. Many pilots and passengers have met their doom because the NTSB cannot connect the dots from one sputtering engine to another sputtering engine. No more witness reports from the ground of the sound of the engine sputtering as the electric aircraft silently goes toward the ground.

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