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Old 03-27-2013, 01:44 PM   #60 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
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Originally Posted by RiderofBikes View Post
Has anyone thought about putting the prius guts into a small personal plane?!

98hp is more than enough to get a plane in the air and up to a reasonable cruise speed and altitude.
Using the Electric drive at altitude, with the assistance of solar panels on the wings and fuselage.

When the enigne is off, use "regen" braking as you coast(dasend) after depleting the battery.
Planes increase in speed or stay constant in a dasend, creating an ungodly coast while charging the battery to full capacity through the constant rotation of the prop. Use the Engines power to climb back up to altitude, cruise on electric until depleted, then desend again for regeneration. As well as mixing your electric use and Regen on Final Approach.


(At the time of this writing, i have no knowledge of Hybrid planes, but im sure there out there) >.>
Various things have been considered, but with aircraft the matter of weight becomes of paramount importance, it affects the runway rollout, the rate of climb, and the HP required for cruising.

On some platforms it would make sense within a limited scope, say for instance supplementary power on takeoff would allow a smaller cheaper powerplant that is optimised for cruising speed. VTOL platforms only requiring maximum power for the duration to the point where translational lift from wing (even rotary wing) and flap devices that have achieved a particular airspeed to attain a tolerable cruising attitude. Usually engine driven thrust contributes to lift primarily, with lift appropriated from wings and high lift devices sharing and eventually replacing that thrust burden as flying speed is achieved.

Ground Effect Vehicles are similarly disposed, (look up machines such as ESKA 1) are another, as they require 2.5x the power needed for takeoff that is used at cruising speed, problematic for engine designers and not conducive to the use of simple fixed pitch airscrews, conventional in lightweight designs.

From memory very few aircraft have fit this profile and have been type approved. One was the Fairey Rotordyne, which had tip jets at the rotor blade tips, and propellers fitted to short conventional wings for horizontal flight. While the platform had operational and design success, it wasnt a commercial success

One of the problems is in obtaining type approval for the aircraft regime is tightly regulated. Lightweight divisions suitable for experimentation are limited in the fuel they can carry, therefore the operating range is expected to be short, probably too short to make it worthwhile. Larger designs are a lot more tightly regulated, perhaps prohibitively so. Certainly very few motor car engines have been approved for civil use in conventional flight but for a few very expensive privately organised affairs.

Last edited by sidecar; 03-27-2013 at 01:50 PM..
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