ETA – 1 Electric Glider Project
An existing glider airframe is to be converted into a highly efficient technology demonstrator, promoting green aviation and a change in thinking about CO2 emissions. We are a Bristol based group of students and academic staff, conducting this exciting project at the University of the West of England (UWE).
Why ETA-1? Why going electric?
Why bother with heavy batteries and tweaking every component of the propulsive system to its outer limits of efficiency? Why develop an entirely new propeller system, of which the design process is driven by: the airframe’s aerodynamic performance, its final weight, the motor, its controller and the batteries used, as well as many more elements? Why all that work when we could simply put some fuel into our existing aircraft and fly?
Because we owe it to our planet.
The aviation sector worldwide burns around 8,000 liters of jet A1 (aviation fuel) per second. During the time it took you read this paragraph (around 20 seconds) 160,000 liters of fuel have been burnt. They have and are being burnt in the region where our planet is most vulnerable to CO2 emissions. Right within the ozone layer. By the time you finished reading this page, over 1 million liters of fuel was burnt around the globe – Needless to say this is in aviation only.
We commenced to showcase the early steps in making aviation greener, designing systems and aircraft for efficiency and building to ultimately fly a highly advanced technology demonstrator, promoting green thinking within and above the aviation sector.
We will not fly all electric tomorrow, but could you have imagined a hybrid hatchback car 30 years ago?