Rolls-Royce tests technology to make world’s fastest electric plane

Luxury watchmaker Bremont will be the official timing partner for the all-electric speed attempt.

Rolls-Royce tested technology to power world’s fastest electric plane. The company trialled a full-scale replica of the plane’s core, called ‘ionBird’, including a 500hp electric powertrain to set speed records, and a battery to supply 250 homes, Rolls-Royce said in a statement.

The plane’s propeller uses the most-dense battery pack ever assembled in aircraft propulsion. At full power, during flight-testing phase, it will fly the aircraft at more than 300mph, setting a new world-speed record for electric flight, the company said.

The airplane engine manufacturer has optimised the system and developed operating procedures for the electric flight. Rolls-Royce is making this plane as part of its Accelerating the Electrification of Flight (ACCEL) initiative. The company has partnered with YASA, an electric motor and controller manufacturer, and Electroflight, a UK-based aviation start-up.

Also read | Finding the age of your electric vehicle’s battery

Luxury watchmaker Bremont will be the official timing partner for the all-electric speed record attempt, and it helped design the plane’s cockpit, featuring a stopwatch.

The first flight is planned for later this year, and Rolls-Royce aims to beat the current all-electric flight world record early next year.

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