The “Spirit of Innovation” has reached the speed of 623km/hour, beating the speed record for electric crafts. This happened some weeks after its debut. However, there is something more: the aircraft has also sustained the maximum speed of 555 km/hour on a travel of 3km and 202 seconds to reach the 3000 metres of altitude, then a short time indeed.
Spirit of Innovation is an old-school “tail-dragger” airplane, then steering in the rear part, and it is equipped with a propulsion battery pack extremely dense in power, with 6,480 cells that are used to power a motor featuring 400 kW (535 HP) and 750 volts.
Phill O’Dell said: «Flying the ‘Spirit of Innovation’ at these incredible speeds and believing we have broken the world-record for all-electric flight is a momentous occasion. This is the highlight of my career and is an incredible achievement for the whole team. The opportunity to be at the forefront of another pioneering chapter of Rolls-Royce’s story as we look to deliver the future of aviation is what dreams are made of».
While all three organisations share a passionate pioneering spirit, Rolls-Royce through the development process has learnt from the motorsport background of both partners and in particular the pace of start-up Electroflight. Meanwhile we have shared expertise and technology with our partners including the rigorous safety and testing methods needed by the civil aviation industry – this combination has helped turn a concept into a world record breaker.
Gary Elliott, CEO of the Aerospace Technology Institute, said: “The ACCEL project demonstrates that strategic investment in UK technology and innovation can achieve extraordinary world-beating results, and sets us firmly on the path to decarbonising passenger flight in the future. This achievement of Rolls-Royce, Electroflight and YASA will resonate for many years to come and inspire the next generation of aerospace engineers. They deserve their place in the record books, and the ATI is proud to have played our part in that. Congratulations to the whole team.”