WATTsUP was developed in partnership with Siemens AG, who provided the electric main propulsion components, and represents the next generation of Pipistrel’s electric aircraft. Every single element of aircraft has been refined to be lighter, more efficient and more reliable. The 85 kW electric motor only weighs 14kg and is more powerful than the popular Rotax 912 series, typically used on microlights and LSAs. The 17 kWh battery pack is dual-redundant and designed to be either quickly replaceable within minutes or charged in less than one hour, thanks to the next generation of Pipistrel’s Battery Management technology. The airframe uses proven features from hundreds of Pipistrel’s aircraft flying worldwide.
Performance of the WATTsUP 2-seat electric trainer is tailored to the needs of flight schools. Short take-off distance, powerful 1000+ fpm climb, and endurance of one hour plus a 30 minute reserve. The WATTsUP is optimized for traffic-pattern operations, where 13% of energy is recuperated on every approach, increasing endurance and at the same time enabling short-field landings.
Ivo Boscarol, CEO of Pipistrel says: “With the ever growing cost of fuel it is time to rethink pilot training. Our solution is the first practical all-electric trainer! Technologies developed specially for this aircraft cut the cost of ab-initio pilot training by as much as 70%, making flying more affordable than ever before. Being able to conduct training on smaller airfields closer to towns with zero C02 emissions and minimum noise is also a game changer! WATTsUP meets microlight and ASTM LSA criteria, as well as standards for electric propulsion and is already certified in France. More countries will follow soon and we are applying for an exemption with the FAA to allow training operations as an S-LSA. WATTsUP is our 5th electric aircraft project and the second to result in a commercial product.”
Frank Anton, Executive Vice President Traction Drives, Large Drives, Siemens AG: “Siemens is developing electric drive systems with highest power-to-weight ratio for aircraft propulsion. Only with innovation we can solve the problems of rising fuel costs, rising passenger demand and rising environmental regulations,” says Frank Anton, the initiator of electric aircraft development at Siemens.” Innovations used in the WATTsUP will be instrumental in making aviation more sustainable in the long run. As electric drives are scalable, we can expect, that in the future also larger aircraft will use electric propulsion. The world is becoming electric, whether in the air, on land or at sea.”
Pipistrel expects to bring the final product to the market in 2015 with a target price below 100,000 EUR.
Pipistrel is a light aircraft manufacturer headquartered in Slovenia, voted Europe’s most innovative company in 2010 by EBA. Pioneering electric flight since 2007, Pipistrel’s Taurus Electro G2 received the Lindbergh award, crowned by the NASA Green Flight Challenge 2011, 1.3 Million USD victory with the four-seat Taurus G4. More than 1000 Pipistrel aircraft are flying in more than 70 countries worldwide.
The Siemens Industry Sector (Erlangen, Germany) is the world’s leading supplier of innovative and environmentally friendly automation and drive technology, industrial software and technology-based services. The Sector’s comprehensive portfolio covers the entire industrial value chain, from product design, engineering and production to services. Siemens enhances its customers’ productivity, efficiency, and flexibility in a wide variety of different industries. With a global workforce of more than 100,000 employees, the Industry Sector comprises the Divisions Industry Automation, Drive Technologies and Customer Services as well as the Business Unit Metals Technologies. For more information, visit http://www.siemens.com/industry.