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French electric hybrid company, VoltAero is testing out Safran's new ENGINeUS electric motors on its Cassio e-plane.
The nine-seater plane is loosely based on a Cessna 337, but only uses one aft propeller and two electric motors mounted on the wings.
It's an exciting collaboration in the world of e-motors and e-planes.
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Electric motors and e-planes
Safran's ENGINeUS motors are rated 45kW with a peak of 70kW. Safran can offer up to 100kW air-cooled electric motors and plans on using 60kW motors in the near future.
These smart electric motors were unveiled at the last National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) in Las Vegas.
It's exciting times for VoltAero too, as its Cassio e-plane will come in three versions. The pure electric Cassio will seat four, the light hybrid will seat six, and the full hybrid will seat up to nine.
The pure electric's range is of 200km (110nmiles), the light hybrid can fly 200-600km (110-320nmiles), and the full hybrid can fly more than 600km (320nmiles).
The Cassio stands out as it has an electric front gear for silent takeoffs. So far, it seems to be the only airplane to be able to do so.
Jean Botti, CEO of VoltAero, told Electrek "This flight was important to test the new Safran engine for take-off. Although it is not the first official flight — the first official flight is March 24 with the new aerodynamics."
It will be a moment of reckoning for the Safran motors to prove themselves fit for handling Cassio's aerial capabilities.
Didier Esteyne, also from VoltAero and who handled the Cassio test flight with the Safran motors, stated "Flying on the power of Safran’s ENGINeUS motors is truly remarkable, with no vibration and extremely low noise levels. It confirms that our Cassio aircraft will bring an entirely new experience to aviation."