On September 27, 2022, aircraft manufacturer Eviation successfully completed the first flight of its zero-emission Alice aircraft, a historic day and major milestone in electric aviation. Seattle Times reporter Dominic Gates captured the following footage:
Alice lifted off at 7:10 a.m. from Grant County International Airport (MWH), flying for 8 minutes at an altitude of 3,500 feet. This trailblazing flight of the technology demonstrator provided Eviation with invaluable data to further optimize the aircraft for commercial production.
“Today we embark on the next era of aviation – we have successfully electrified the skies with the unforgettable first flight of Alice,” said Eviation President and CEO Gregory Davis. “People now know what affordable, clean and sustainable aviation looks and sounds like for the first time in a fixed-wing, all-electric aircraft. This ground-breaking milestone will lead innovation in sustainable air travel, and shape both passenger and cargo travel in the future.”
- Eviation’s Alice Completes High-Speed Ground Test, Receives 50 Aircraft Pre-orders – Sept 2022
- Eviation’s ‘Alice’ Prepares for its First Test Flight – Jan 2022
- DHL Express to Order 12 Alice Cargo Aircraft from Eviation – Aug 2021
Alice produces no carbon emissions, significantly reduces noise, and costs a fraction to operate per flight hour compared to light jets or high-end turboprops. The aircraft is available in three variants including a nine-passenger commuter, an elegant and sophisticated six-passenger executive cabin, and an eCargo version. All configurations support two crew members. The executive cabin and eCargo variations are identical to the commuter configuration, except for the interior.
Alice is powered by two magni650 electric propulsion units from magniX, the only flight-proven electric propulsion systems at this scale. Other key suppliers include AVL (battery support), GKN (wings), Honeywell (advanced fly-by-wire system, flight controls and avionics), Multiplast (fuselage), Parker Aerospace (six technology systems), and Potez (doors).
Alice’s advanced battery system is highly efficient and endlessly upgradeable enabling range improvements as battery technology evolves. The aircraft also incorporates a fly-by-wire cockpit, providing greater reliability and systems redundancy.
Why it’s important: All-electric aircraft will make regional travel more economically and environmentally sustainable for businesses and consumers. This new generation of aircraft has the power to transform communities by providing access to airports not currently used by commercial flights due to noise concerns or restricted operating hours. Eviation Alice is targeted at commuter and cargo markets, and will typically operate flights ranging from 150 miles to 250 miles.
Cape Air Founder and Board Chairman Dan Wolf said the following, which accurately depicts the gravity of this achievement: “The first flight of Alice represents a transformational milestone for the aviation industry”. “We currently fly more than 400 regional flights per day, connecting more than 30 cities across the United States and Caribbean. Alice can easily cover 80 percent of our flight operations, bringing sustainable, emission-free travel to the communities we serve.”
Source // Eviation press release