China conducts its first flight of an electric plane
China's RX4E can fly 186 miles on a single charge, potentially making the electric aircraft good for short-haul flights
China carried out its first flight of a four-seat electric aircraft, state media reported, as the nation looks to develop battery-powered planes for short-haul transport.
The Chinese-made RX4E aircraft, which weighs 1,200 kilograms and can fly 300 kilometers in one charge, flew from the northeastern city of Shenyang, Xinhua News Agency reported. The plane, made mostly of lightweight carbon materials, will have a longer range with advances in battery technology, and it could be used for short trips, pilot training or tourist flights, Xinhua said.
Electric aircraft, if commercial viable, are appealing because they’re low on noise and emissions. Uber Technologies Inc. plans to start electric flying-taxi services in Melbourne from 2023. It is also piloting the service in Dallas and Los Angeles.