The Ampaire EEL electric aircraft just performed the longest nonstop flight
Los Angeles-based aircraft developer Ampaire claims to have successfully flown a 1,135-mile nonstop flight with their Ampaire EEL electric aircraft. According to the California company, pilot Elliot Seguin flew the EEL from July 20 to July 22 for 1,880 miles from Camarillo Airport in California to Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
The trip started on Wednesday with a 85-mile repositioning flight to Mojave, then flew 1,135 miles to Kansas on Thursday, and ended at Oshkosh on Friday after a 660-mile flight. Ampaire states that Thursday’s flight set a new benchmark for the class and demonstrated the plane’s environmental friendliness. Their reports show that the Ampaire EEL electric aircraft saved up to 40% in fuel savings when compared to a Cessna Skymaster.
The EEL is a six-seat Cessna 337 Skymaster that has been retrofitted with an electric drivetrain and a conventional combustion engine. The aircraft company has scheduled 2024 as the start date for passenger operation and anticipates receiving a supplemental type certificate from the Federal Aviation Administration in 2023.
Ampaire’s first commercial offering in their nine-seat Eco Caravan regional aircraft will implement technology taken from the EEL. It will be capable of reducing fuel consumption by up to 70%. By the end of 2022, the Eco Caravan will make its first flight according to Dr. Susan Ying, Ampaire’s SVP of Global Partnerships.
Unlike the Ampaire EEL electric aircraft, which is made for aviation pilots, the Eco Caravan is meant for commercial use. Customers can select either four or six seats and two distinct propulsion options. Based on the company’s release, Ampaire’s team plans to scale up their technology for larger regional planes, such as a 19-passenger, two-engine aircraft.