Wright Blog

Wright Weport January 2018

Dear all,

Welcome to the Wright Weport for January 2018.

Summary

  • Norway and Australia and Electric Aviation
  • Wright Test Stand Video – Would you mind posting to social media?
  • Seeking Customer Interview Phone Calls

Norway and Australia and Electric Aviation
As many of you know, the government of Norway recently announced that it intends to make all short Norwegian flights electric by 2040. Meanwhile, the government of Australia certified its first electric plane for a flight training school. The importance of these announcements cannot be overstated.

It might be hard to remember that fewer than ten years ago, electric cars were not only not considered feasible, but they were regularly derided. “Electric Cars Are An Extraordinarily Bad Idea,” said one article.  “8 Reasons Why The Electric Car Will Not Be A Success Anytime Soon,” said another.

So what happened? A combination of customer demand (like Tesla’s Roadster selling out in three weeks) and government regulation (like tax incentives for electric cars) helped propel electric cars forward. In an industry as multi-faceted as transportation, government plays an enormous role in enabling future innovation.

Today electric cars are inevitable. Tesla’s Model 3 is getting 1,800 reservations per day. There are 3 million electric cars worldwide. Countries like England and France plan to ban gas cars by 2040.

This is why Norway and Australia’s announcements are such a big deal.

On the customer side, airlines like easyJet have already shown that they’re eager for electric planes. Norway and Australia are the first governments to say that they’re interested in supporting electric planes. Their announcements pave the way for electric aviation. They create an incentive for aviation companies to build electric planes. This in turn incentives battery companies and other enabling suppliers.

The point is: Norway and Australia are pushing electric aviation forward, and we could not be more excited.

Wright Test Stand Video
In Wright news, a few months ago we announced that Chip Yates, our master airplane builder, had constructed a 500 kW test stand for our engine tests. We recently learned that, at least for the moment, it’s the highest power electric aviation test stand in the world!

It goes without saying that there are plenty of companies large and small that are working in electric aviation, and many of then have the potential to build higher-power stands. Airbus, after all, is working on a 2 MW propulsion system for release in 2020. Nonetheless we’re happy to add our contribution to the space, and if any researchers are interested in collaborating feel free to reach out.

We made a short video about the test stand and the innovations in its design. If you wouldn’t mind quickly sharing it on your favorite social media service, we’d be grateful. FacebookInstagramThank you very much!

Seeking Customer Interview Phone Calls
Lastly, we’re conducting customer research to learn about your motivations when flying. We’re seeking to speak with anyone who flies, and in particular, we’re looking for people who fly in smaller planes (like air taxi, skydivers, and float plane users). If you have 10 minutes for a quick interview, would you mind filling out this form? We’ll send you a special gift as a thank-you.

Also: if you’re an operator of small planes (or know someone who is), we’d love to speak with you too. Feel free to reply to this email directly.

People
Thanks to Chip, Mark, Randy, Doug, Andy, Ben, Darold, Joe, Noam, Brian, Stonly, Brian, Matt, Scott, Karthik, Kate, Thomas, Shaun, Elsa, Paul, Amelie, Dan, Kim, Richard, Stanley, George, Whitney, Mady, Emily, Thierry, Meridith, Mary, Max, Rachel, Rosa, Victor, Matthew, Ole, Richard, Alan, Danielle, Inge, Ipek, Ludovic, Lee, Amy, Jacqui, Daniel, Nate, Sophie, Mike, Amira, Jess, Ben, Jenn, Kate, Blake, and everyone else who helped out and/or sent over words of encouragement.

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Thank you very much!

Electrically,
Jeff and Aaron

PS: Wright song of the month: Vale la Pena – Grupo Merenguísimo

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