FAA Working to Make Electric Planes Easier to BuyElectric planes have been touted by many as the future of the aviation industry, but there are many legislative hurdles in the way of their proliferation. The most popular type of plane among individual consumers, the light sport aircraft--also known as LSA--don’t allow for an electric drive system. The regulatons were written without any consideration for electric aircraft.
Now the FAA is working to change that. At the CAFE Electric Aircraft Symposium today, Tom Gunnarson, an FAA analyst, announced that the FAA has completed its initial regulatory study on electric aircraft. He went on that they should begin drafting the rules shortly.
And once the rules are drafted, tested and approved, we might finally be able to get our hands on small electric personal aircraft. Of course, the time frame that Gunnarson gave wasn’t promising: he said that electric aircraft should be able to be classified as light sport aircraft rather than experimental vehicles in a minimum of five years, if we’re lucky. A more likely time frame is 10 years.
So it will be awhile before we are able to fly our own electric craft. But then, electric aircraft still have some development to do. Most have very short ranges, mostly due to the weight of the batteries used in the craft. If electric airplanes are ever to take off, some further engineering is going t obe needed to cut down on their weight.
Until then, you’ll have to settle for the commercial drone legislation that is being pushed through. That’s interesting too, right?
Engadget Photo by : sgtgary