Cars aren’t the only vehicles powered by electricity, now airplanes are too.
This is the Airbus E-Fan 2.0 prototype aircraft that debuted at the Paris Air Show. It’s an all electric plug in airplane that runs off lithium-ion batteries. If you want to fly and save money, this is one way to do it. Aviation fuel costs about 7 dollars a gallon and a traditional gas powered plane would cost about 400 dollars to fill up.
But with an electric plane there’s a big trade off. You can only fly two passengers and fly a hundred miles. A traditional plane of similar size has a range of about 7 times that.
Aviation pollution is often overlooked, but that’s starting to change. In 2013, aircraft emitted 705 tons of carbon dioxide, accounting for 11 percent of Co2 emissions in the transportation sector.
In the US the Obama Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency are looking to regulate CO2 emissions on planes designed from 2020. Aircraft have lifespans of 20 to 30 years so that could mean 2050 or later until we see actual change.
Airbus plans to invest a total of 20 million Euro into the development of the E-Fan 2.0 and the company has a goal of having a 100-seat electric passenger plane by 2050.
The E-Fan prototype will be commercialized in late 2017, but if you want one, get in line because the company only plans to initially produce about 10 a year.