Innovation and Quirkiness in Aviation

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Aviation has hit a spurt of creativity in design, powerplants, greenness and other new things. Here is a short summary of interesting innovation in this business:


Ambular Promotes Universal Air Ambulance Concept


“…Now the worlds of advanced air mobility (AAM) vehicles and aeromedical transport are merging and the Ambular effort to develop an eVTOL aircraft dedicated to medevac operations is well underway. The latest company to join the all-volunteer Ambular team is China-based eVTOL developer EHang…”


Otto Aviation Reveals Celera 500L Business Airplane


Celera “Otto Aviation this week unveiled the Celera 500L, a six-passenger pusher-prop business aircraft powered by a single 500-hp Red A03 diesel engine. To date, the company’s full-scale prototype has completed 31 test flights. Otto said FAA certification is expected in 2023, with service entry to follow in 2025.

According to the company, the submarine-shaped aircraft will have a maximum cruise speed of 391 knots and a range exceeding 3,900 nm, while offering a stand-up cabin and fuel economy of 16 to 22 nm per gallon. To achieve this efficiency, Otto said the Celera 500L employs “extensive” laminar flow over the fuselage, wings, and tail surfaces.

The company also claims that the airplane’s carbon emissions will be about 80 percent lower than comparable business aircraft and 40 percent lower than current airline aircraft.”


EAG Union Jack

“…With a range of 1,500km and a maximum speed of 275kts, HERA features “whisper-quiet’ operations, reducing noise pollution along with carbon emissions.

Meanwhile, a novel “Potential Energy Recovery System” (PERS) allows aircraft batteries to charge while airborne, minimising turnaround time after landing…”

 Urban Aeronautics Launches Plan for EMS CityHawk VTOL

Urbaan Aeronautics

“Urban Aeronautics is partnering with Hatzolah Air to jointly offer an emergency medical service (EMS) version of its planned CityHawk VTOL aircraft. The company is aiming to complete certification of an initial hybrid-powered aircraft within three to five years, with a hydrogen-powered version set to enter service after 2028.

The main passenger-carrying design for the CityHawk will be adapted to accommodate a pilot, a patient plus a companion, along with two emergency medical personnel and life support equipment. The aircraft is to be powered by Urban Aeronautics’ Fancraft ducted fan technology developed for the company’s existing Cormorant unmanned aircraft, which is intended for missions such as carrying cargo. It is expected to have a range of around 125 miles, although a hybrid-powered version could extend this to 175 miles and this could be ready to fly by early 2023.”

Xwing Unveils Plans for Autonomous Cargo Operations

Xwing autonomous

“Autonomous flight technology pioneer Xwing says it has already made more than 70 pilotless takeoffs and landings in a converted Cessna 208B Grand Caravan. Unveiling the aircraft on Thursday at Buchanan Field Airport in California, the startup said it intends to start regional cargo operations on routes of up to 500 miles as part of its plan to prove the use case for autonomous operations.

Xwing has been developing its Autoflight System for four years. It consists of detect-and-avoid sensors to analyze airborne and ground-based hazards and navigation and control software to generate optimal flight paths, interface with ATC, monitor the health of aircraft systems, and deal with operational contingencies.”

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Zaniness and innovation are close cousins, here’s an example of how aviators have brought creative thought to solve an urgent operational issue:

Cars Light Runway In Alaska To Enable A Child’s Hospital Flight


runway car lights

“As a creative response and a literal ‘light bulb moment,’ locals jumped into action, bringing their vehicles to the sides of the runway to light the path. Villagers of the close-knit tribal community of just 70 residents sprang into action. Some drove their sport utility vehicles (SUVs), all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), and cars to the rural airport, where they pointed their headlights at the runway. This allowed the pilot of the LifeMed Alaska Beechcraft King Air to land.

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