UPDATED: Harbour Air conducts first test flight of all-electric seaplane

Harbour Air successfully conducted the first test flight of an all-electric seaplane today, December 10.

Harbour Air CEO and founder Greg McDougall piloted the e-plane himself for the  inaugural flight out of the floatplane harbour at Sea Island on the Middle Arm of the Fraser River.

article continues below

“Today, we made history,” McDougall said in a press release. “I am incredibly proud of Harbour Air’s leadership role in re-defining safety and innovation in the aviation and seaplane industry. Canada has long held an iconic role in the history of aviation, and to be part of this incredible world-first milestone is something we can all be really proud of.”

harbour air
Harbour Air is reporting that it successfully conducted the first test flight of an all-electric seaplane Dec. 10. Photo Harbour Air/Twitter

Harbour Air has been working with magniX in Washington to outfit one of its harbour-to-harbour seaplanes with an electric motor. A six-passenger DHC-2 de Havilland Beaver was outfitted with a 750-horsepower (560 kilowatt) magni500 electric motor made by magniX.

The flight marks an important milestone. Aviation, which produces about 2% of the world's carbon emissions, presents a particular problem when it comes to decarbonization of transportation, since there are issues with the energy densities of batteries to provide the kind of power needed to get an airplane – especially one with passengers and cargo -- into the air.

MagniX appears to have addressed some of the power density issues, at least for smaller planes and shorter distances. Harbour Air's seaplanes typically make short trips, between Vancouver and Victoria, Seattle, Nanaimo, the Gulf Islands, Whistler, Tofino and Sechelt.

“I’ve been convinced for some period of time that the future of transportation in general, and certainly aviation, is electrified,” McDougall, said in a corporate video.

“The transportation industry and specifically the aviation segment that has been, for the most part, stagnant since the late 1930s, is ripe for a massive disruption," Roei Ganzarski, CEO of magniX, said in a press release. "Now we are proving that low-cost, environmentally friendly, commercial electric air travel can be a reality in the very near future.”



This story has been updated since it was originally posted.

Read the original article here.

Read Related Topics


NOTE: To post a comment you must have an account with at least one of the following services: Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ You may then login using your account credentials for that service. If you do not already have an account you may register a new profile with Disqus by first clicking the "Post as" button and then the link: "Don't have one? Register a new profile".

The North Shore News welcomes your opinions and comments. We do not allow personal attacks, offensive language or unsubstantiated allegations. We reserve the right to edit comments for length, style, legality and taste and reproduce them in print, electronic or otherwise. For further information, please contact the editor or publisher, or see our Terms and Conditions.

comments powered by Disqus

Popular News

Find the North Shore News
Community Events Calendar