In 2020, A team led by Rolls-Royce will attempt to smash the current 210mph electric world speed record.
ACCEL, short for “Accelerating the Electrification of Flight”, is a new concept from jet engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce. It aims to set a new precedence in electric aircraft through harnessing power of some of the smartest minds in the industry, such as those behind Formula E (the electric racing series).
Combining efforts of electric motor and controller manufacturer YASA and aviation start-up Electroflight will allow this project to get off the ground. The collaboration will aim for a 2020 start to test flights from a remote UK beach.
Work to build the plane will be carried out in a single hangar found in a corner of the county of Gloucestershire, England.
The all-electric aircraft will be “powered by the most powerful battery ever built for flight” according to Matheu Parr, the project lead for this Rolls-Royce mission. This groundbreaking battery will contain 6,000 cells and produce 750kw! As a comparison, our all-electric giant A-10 featured on the Flite Test A-10 vs. Tank episode was powered by 8 cells.
At the business end of the ACCEL, the nose will contain three power density 750R electric motors geared together. This will result in a power output of around 750 volts with over 90 per cent efficiency. Those are some mighty impressive numbers to take on a lofty target.
The current record is 210 mph which was set by Siemens in 2017. The team behind the ACCEL want to blow this out of the water whilst setting their sites on an even more ambitious goal than the 300mph barrier: The ACCEL aims to surpass the S.6B Supermarine seaplane record of 343mph set in 1931 when it was the fastest airplane in the world.
Surely, if they succeed in their mission, the ACCEL team will notch a new mark into the story of electric aviation and accelerate the world yet closer to a cleaner and more sustainable future of flight.
Article by James Whomsley
Editor of FliteTest.com
YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/projectairaviation