Electric Airplanes?

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Stephen Poole, Jul 19, 2019.

  1. genna

    genna Cleared for Takeoff

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    I do not have data, but i'm guessing that 9L aircooled engine running at 55% power is somewhat less efficient than 1.5T engine running at its peak efficiency.
     
  2. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That isn't really true. The power differential between takeoff and cruise in an airplane engine isn't that much, and if you aren't throttling it, it's actually operating in a very efficient mode even at reduced power. In a car, yes, I would agree with you, as the power differential between acceleration and cruise is significant.
     
  3. tspear

    tspear Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    Problem is theory and practice often seem to not meet. I can recall two decades ago when all sorts of physicists and engineers said we were approaching the theoretical maximum density for computer chips. Instead, they have found ways to go past the theory.

    Tim
     
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  4. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Final Approach

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    I'm not sure where topology nor it's math come into play here.
    One of these threads has a reference where the polysulfide diffusion problem, which limits the number of recharge cycles, has apparently been solved.
     
  5. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    That there. Far too many extremely important decisions being made by people who have absolutely no clue about the limitations of current technologies, and they too easily believe the hype about unproven or completely so-far-nonexistent future technologies. Australia now wants US oil reserves because they've destroyed so much coal-fired power and locked-in their oil reserves. Germany is trying to buy power from other countries now. What a mess.
     
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  6. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Final Approach

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    This purports that Germany is a net exporter of electricity.
    https://www.renewable-ei.org/en/activities/column/20180302.html

    Australia seems to have enough electrical capacity, too:
    https://www.aer.gov.au/wholesale-markets/wholesale-statistics/generation-capacity-and-peak-demand
     
  7. Dav8or

    Dav8or Final Approach

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    By enlarge, I agree with you. We aren't very good at large scale public works anymore. However, there is Elon Musk. An American billionaire with a vision. He thinks big and he talks big. His record of accomplishments exceed his record of failure. His timeline estimates are mostly ludicrous, but his claims of accomplishing the goal at some point is impressive. I do think we will go to Mars, but it won't be NASA that gets there first. Somewhere between the timeframe that Elon says he'll do it and the time that NASA will actually do it, is when Space X will be there. Whether he can get men there and back alive is a big maybe, but's that's the same for anyone else.
     
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  8. Dav8or

    Dav8or Final Approach

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    We have all the "current technology" we need to both provide additional power for the future and greatly reduce carbon emissions. Today. Right now. One word- nuclear. We need to stop being deniers and we need to stop being ******* and get onboard with the 21st century.
     
  9. 3393RP

    3393RP En-Route

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    Speculation? Fringe? The preponderance of what I posted is fact, not opinion or speculation. The destruction of existing power generation capacity, and the details I put forth, are fact. The difficulties of scaling the new "green" generation system are substantial, and predictions it will replace all petroleum fueled power plants in ten years, a common talking point, are speculation in the extreme.

    Talking points about an imminent exponential breakthrough in battery technology abound, yet it is always just beyond our grasp. The disastrous effects of cobalt mining on the environment and children of the Congo are well documented, but conveniently ignored. Whatever elements provide the basis for future batteries will have considerable environmental effects, based upon the projected volume of manufacture. Scaling production to anticipated demand exceeds the realistic limits of finance, engineering, and construction, talk of a WWII sized commitment aside. What's to be built isn't even known yet.

    This is directly relevant to electric vehicles of all kinds, not just aircraft. Electric vehicle sales projections recently issued by VW, GM, and Ford indicate a substantial demand will be placed on the world's power grids in ten years. This is the same grid that killed 85 people and destroyed Paradise, CA, and recently produced an hour's hours long blackout in NYC.

    In the US alone, repairing known problems and modernizing the electrical distribution system nationwide has a price tag in the hundreds of billions. Who is going to pay for the upgrades needed due to the demand from charging electric vehicles?

    But we can talk about electric aircraft. As I said previously, claims by OXIS regarding the imminent production of LiS batteries for aircraft are not supported by facts. Every press release they have made about LiS batteries repeat the same half truths, using shaded language designed to conceal the fact they have only produced a handful of small pouch batteries and that their technology, nor anyone else's, has "solved the polysulfide problem" as you stated.

    Statements like this one from Uber border on complete nonsense.

    Uber is developing shared air transportation—planned for 2023—between suburbs and cities, and ultimately within cities. We’re working with our Elevate Network partners to launch fleets of small, electric VTOL (vertical takeoff and landing) aircraft in Dallas, Los Angeles, and a to-be-announced international market.

    How do you suppose this will happen in the next 36 months, considering the aircraft described doesn't exist? The first conforming prototype of the Cirrus jet flew in March 2014, and FAA certification was awarded in October 2016.

    If it took an experienced manufacturer 2½ years to achieve certification of a product that shared significant construction techniques with a 15 year old design, how are these clean sheet design VTOL aircraft going to be carrying revenue passengers by 2023? What are the chances the imposition of these magic flying machines on the congested airspace of LA and Dallas will be absorbed without years of congressional and bureaucratic wrangling? I think we all know the answer to these questions.

    The idea of an electric GA aircraft is nice, but who is going to buy them? Sales of piston singles are at death's door. What difference is an electric motor going to make in that market, particularly since it can't replicate the performance of a piston engine and 80 gallons of 100LL?

    The answer, according to aviation forums, is the training market. Considering the fact that sales of 172s and PA-28s to training schools are moribund during what is supposedly an increasing revenue pilot shortage, what is going to motivate aviation academies to purchase planes that cost as much or more? Fuel cost? That cannot be determined today or in the foreseeable future.

    The cost and dispatch rate of future electric trainers is currently a complete unknown, because the batteries which will power this supposed new generation of trainers don't exist. The size and weight of the power system are yet to be determined, as are the electronics specific to the batteries that haven't been invented yet. Once again, certification of these designs will take years.

    Remember that ferry you mentioned that accepts a 10.5 MW charge? Did you notice the charging voltage was 10.5 kV? Somehow I can't envision a kilovolt potential charging cord being dragged across the ramp and connected to an e172, much less the challenges of housing the energy of a high voltage propulsion system behind .032 aluminum.

    The amount of inaccurate and manufactured information about electric power and vehicles, especially aircraft, being "taken as fact" is running neck and neck with your so-called "fringe" speculation. Call Harbour Air and ask them when you can book a ride in a DHC-2 powered by batteries and an electric motor.

    While I'm sure all of the predictions of a sunny carbon free electric future will happen someday, the current absence of sober analytical evaluation and abundance of uneducated optimism will not result in its appearance anytime soon.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
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  10. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Final Approach

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    Thank you again for proving my point. The USA "Can't do" any more.
    A lot of "alternative facts" and speculation posted, no citations.
     
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  11. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    Then you'll have to lock up the paid protesters and start leaning hard on the politicians to get with the program. Protesters and politicians are gullible people that believe the lies put out by the folks that build windmills and solar panels and battery banks.
     
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  12. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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  13. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Final Approach

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    May as well lock the thread now. Paid protesters? They may exist, but so far, no one has cited anything more than accusations without proof.
     
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  14. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    You know, some of us are old. We've seen and heard way too many phony promises of "revolutionary" this or that, stuff that never materializes or turns out to be a total dud. 40 years ago we were promised hydrogen fuel cells, and a lot of investors lost their shirts on that. Some of us--a lot of us old guys--understand some of the physics involved in generating electricity and distributing it, and turning it into useful power, and when we see vast fields of solar or wind power stuff, expensive stuff that makes small amounts of electricity per dollar invested, and creates a huge amount of pollution in making of this machinery, we just shake our heads and wonder what the people are thinking.

    "Alternative facts" is a popular dismissal of information we don't like. But dismissing it doesn't make it go away any more than ignoring your cancer makes it go away. It's inconvenient to face up to realities sometimes. Reality is hard. Wishful thinking is a poor weapon against it.
     
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  15. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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  16. Dav8or

    Dav8or Final Approach

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    Nothing wrong with wind turbines, solar panels and battery banks. However they can't provide the power levels we need now fast enough. Nuclear can. Sadly, a great number of Americans are terrified of nuclear power and another great number of Americans emotionally wedded and financially involved with fossil fuels. The combination of the two factions keeps us stuck in the 20th century, doing nothing to radically alter carbon in the air and the seas.
     
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  17. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    Except for the massive taxypayer-funded subsidies so that we get to pay twice for our power.
     
  18. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Dwarfed by the military subsidy to protect our access to Middle Eastern oil.
     
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  19. FlyingElvii

    FlyingElvii Line Up and Wait

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    The Pipistrel-based Alpha Electro G2 crashed today in Norway, per Twitter, it ran out of "Fuel".
     
  20. Dav8or

    Dav8or Final Approach

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    Yes, exactly. Why in the world are we sitting over in the Persian Gulf with a whole battle group guarding the Strait of Hormuz, 24/7 again?? Oh... that's right, protecting "American interests" and aiding our "allies". BS! It's about keeping that sweet cheap crude flowing on the taxpayer dime.
     
  21. Dav8or

    Dav8or Final Approach

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    Like hyperbole much?? Since it's "massive", why not make it 3x, or 10x as much? Hell, if you really want to scare people, make it 100 TIMES AS MUCH!!!! Agggghhh! :rolleyes: Never mind the cost of paying more and more for insurance each year as ever increasing devastation is caused by hurricanes, tornados and wildfires each year.
     
  22. 3393RP

    3393RP En-Route

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    Feel free to point out anything I have posted which is not factual.

    Perhaps you should take your own advice, and provide citations when you make unsupported blanket claims, like your posts that state the LiS battery polysulfide issue has been "solved".

    It's quite a leap from a tiny LiS battery on a laboratory table to powering an aircraft in a commercially available useful manner. My "speculation" that event won't occur until years from now isn't at risk of being proven wrong.
     
  23. Crashnburn

    Crashnburn Line Up and Wait

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    Actually, to double the speed, you need to CUBE the power required. Drag goes as the square of the speed, and work is speed times drag, so you end up with some constant times speed cubed. This just makes your point stronger.
     
  24. Crashnburn

    Crashnburn Line Up and Wait

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    I've heard about a 5% improvement per year. Using the law of 72, at 5%, capacity/density will double about every 14-1/2 years.
     
  25. Stan Cooper

    Stan Cooper Cleared for Takeoff

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    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019
  26. Salty

    Salty Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    That approach makes sense. Which is why it won’t get any traction in the press. There’s too much money to be made working on a solution. Finding a solution is far less profitable.
     
  27. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

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    What makes you think that finding a solution is less profitable than looking for one? And even if that were true, what would be the financial incentive for the press to ignore it?

    It looks to me like it is getting quite a lot of press attention:

    https://www.google.com/search?q=zer...yIfkAhVCSq0KHW92AoUQ_AUIFCgE&biw=1536&bih=710
     
  28. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    https://www.investors.com/politics/...bal-warming-isnt-making-weather-more-extreme/
     
  29. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Final Approach

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    Pretty much everything you wrote in this thread.

    I did cite it for you. Hint: it's in the "Those Monsters" thread. Go look there. You ignored them that time, too.
    You are free to dispute those citations with your own.

    Let's see...the next point will be "Those researchers faked the data because they were paid by a LiS battery manufacturer" :rolleyes:
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2019
  30. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I like Pipistrel's idea. Small engine, small motor, small battery. They're combined at takeoff, engine + motor produces climb power, engine alone produces cruise power, and during descent, landing, and taxi the engine stores power into the batteries.

    How well this works does depend on the battery's energy density.

    It really is silly for us to not use nuclear at this point. It's a technology that has no gaseous emissions, its waste can be stored until we figure out something better to do with it, and in reality we only need to have one generation of nuke plants to give us plenty of time to work the bugs out of renewables and storage.

    I am not nearly as pessimistic as you are about that subject, though. There are much better ways of storing renewable energy today, like pumped hydro and other gravitational potential storage systems. Batteries need only be one component of the storage, not the entire system.

    So, I can't find anything about it running out of juice, even on Twitter. That sounds like baseless speculation on the part of the crowd that hates EVs too. But if it were true, it would be nothing more than a major failure of either Pipistrel to provide prior warning, or the pilot to heed said warning. There's really nothing new under the sun... Except that an electric airplane would experience a slow reduction in power, not an immediate loss the way a gas-powered engine does.
     
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  31. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    I like what they're doing, and hope for the best. Hopefully they'll unlock some secrets. Innovation is good

    #cautiousbutoptimistic
     
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  32. tspear

    tspear Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    I read on this one recently. https://energyvault.com/
    I thought it was a rather cool idea and likely cheaper than many other solutions with current tech.

    Tim
     
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  33. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I believe I have heard of one of their installations. It definitely has some advantages over pumped hydro, mainly that it can be deployed anywhere without need for special topography as most of the other gravitational potential storage systems do.
     
  34. Dav8or

    Dav8or Final Approach

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    We can choose to find things that are tailored to our individual bias or listen to the scientists instead of an editorial on an investment website who's tag line is- "No hidden agenda: Get news from a pro-free market, pro growth perspective.".

    Since this investor editorial decided to pick and choose graphics from the EPA and was kind enough to actually cite the source, we can choose to go to the actual source of these graphs and data and read the analysis of what these mean from the people that actually created them. <hint> It's a VERY different story than the "pro-free market" guy.

    For anybody that cares- https://www.epa.gov/climate-indicators
     
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  35. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Too funny! In other words, "We have an agenda; it's just not a hidden agenda." Thank heaven for small favors, I guess!
     
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  36. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Final Approach

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    https://cen.acs.org/energy/energy-storage-/Batteries-need-boost-fly-friendly/97/i42

    Article about lithium air batteries
    They mention some chemistries that could potentially reach that number, but none are anywhere near practical as yet.
     
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  37. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    And you do have to wonder the environmental impact of those as well. Electricity and batteries aren't free.. mining for the metals in these batteries is hard on the environment, and the subsequent charging of these batteries will not be free either. We're using less and less coal, but while natural gas is cleaner, it's still burning a limited resource

    It's honestly sad that 3 Mile Island, Fukushima, and Chernobyl have so damaged the public's perception of nuclear power, as it's near the closest thing we actually have to a "free lunch"
     
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  38. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Final Approach

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    You’re free to suggest alternatives. :dunno:
     
  39. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

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    Dilithium crystals
     
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  40. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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    yes it did. Fortunately no major injuries.
    But this also brought up for me a question about electric motors, in cars, planes, whatever.
    I notice that sometimes in phones for example that the loss of battery power is not linear.
    A fully charged whatever, may take a good while to start dropping in capacity...then even out for a while from 80% down to some number, say 30%. But not always, sometimes from 30% or so, it seems to start going down a good deal more rapidly.

    I asked a coworker that has a small electric car, and he confirmed that he experiences that with his car as well.

    and they don’t seem to be able to adjust the readout for batteries, such that they could factor in the different rates of consumption, or don’t care to. He says on his car the calculated range changes for the worse as he gets lower. So at one point calculated he has 20 km range, but he can drive 5 km, and then see he now doesn’t have a range of 15, but instead now it is 8, etc.

    Given that we are used to fuel burn rates that for a given setting will be predictable, so we can plan for required reserve fuel at destinations, time wise...

    I am not sure, and maybe this will be rectified, but it seems that currently it is comforting that a pilot can with confidence in the numbers calculate remaining flight time, fuel consumption. But how much variance is there with purely electrical and batteries?
     
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