Posted by Courtney E. Howard
OSHKOSH, Wis., 1 Aug. 2011. The Elektra One, solar-enabled electric aircraft system from PC-Aero and SolarWorld, won the Lindbergh Prize for Electric Aircraft Vision Award from Erik Lindbergh, grandson of aviator Charles Lindbergh and founder of Lindbergh Electric Aircraft Prize (LEAP), an organization promoting electric aviation.
Lindbergh made the announcement at the World Electric Aircraft Symposium, a day-long conference on innovation in electric-powered flight, during the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2011 air show in Oshkosh, Wis. Calin Gologan, principal of PC-Aero in Germany, accepted the award at the symposium, where he provided a presentation on the aircraft. A representative of SolarWorld, a U.S. solar manufacturer for more than 35 years, also thanked Gologan for his work on emission-free aviation.
Elektra One will be sold as a package featuring wing-borne SolarWorld photovoltaic cells to extend its range, as well as a SolarWorld-powered hangar to house the plane and charge the aircraft’s lithium battery pack.
“Having a complete plan for energy management is the key to widespread adoption of electric propulsion,” says a LEAP spokesperson. “PC-Aero is the winner of the Lindbergh Prize for Electric Aircraft Vision Award for its integration of SolarWorld’s solar technology into the Elektra One aircraft and the supporting hanger. Its vision is for the energy from the rooftop solar cells to not only provide power to the aircraft but also the hanger itself and excess energy to feed back to the power grid.”
“This is an electrifying time,” Erik Lindbergh said in a release. “Visionaries are taking risks. The field is alive with novel approaches and rich in activity and experimentation. With continued intellectual and financial investments, great opportunity exists for technological advancements that could apply well beyond electric aircraft.”