May 28, 2020

Electric Caravan Takes Flight in U.S.


In another advancement toward the goal of commercial flights in electric aircraft, a Cessna 208B Caravan equipped with a 750-hp Magni500 electric propulsion system made a successful 30-minute flight at Moses Lake airport (KMWH) in the U.S. state of Washington on Thursday (May 28).

We last heard about MagniX as the Seattle-based supplier of the motor that propelled one of Harbour Air’s DHC-2 Beavers into the history books last December as the first aircraft designed to carry paying passengers to conduct a totally electric-powered flight.

“The iconic Caravan has been a workhorse of industry moving people and transporting goods on short routes for decades,” said MagniX CEO Roei Ganzarski. “This first flight of the eCaravan is yet another step on the road to operating these middle-mile aircraft at a fraction of the cost, with zero emissions, from and to smaller airports. These electric commercial aircraft will enable the offering of flying services of people and packages in a way previously not possible.”

In this project, MagniX partnered with AeroTEC, a company specializing in aerospace testing and certification.

“I’m proud of the pioneering work performed by our engineers, technicians and flight test team,” said AeroTEC CEO Lee Human. He added, “There’s no roadmap for testing and certifying electric aircraft – this is a new frontier and AeroTEC is on the front lines developing the processes and best practices that will pave the way for electric aviation.”