EASA’s first type certification world-wide of a fully electric aircraft in June 2020 marked an important milestone in the quest for environmentally sustainable aviation.
Cooperation between industry and EASA
The certification, completed in less than three years, was only possible in that time-frame due to close cooperation between the aircraft manufacturer (Pipistrel) and EASA.
The common goal: ensuring the aircraft met the high standard of safety needed for certification.
The project also brought important learnings that support future certifications of electrically powered engines and aircraft.
- Have a look at EASA's Press Release for more information.
Two stream certification approach
The certification project developed in two streams, firstly the typical certification activities related to the aircraft and in parallel a coordinated flight test program using a fleet of (non-certified) Alpha-Electros under EASA permit to fly.
Having the ability to operate a similar aircraft meant the EASA team had access to operational data necessary for the certification activity, while highlighting the operational needs to enable electric aviation.
- For technical data, check the type certificate data sheet.
First-hand experience in electric flight
During the course of these projects EASA gained first-hand experience in electric flight, learning more about batteries and their management systems, as well as electrical engine power units.
Developments and further certification projects
The first certified all electric aircraft is a steppingstone that opens up the possibility of new aircraft powerplant configurations such as a hybrid combination of piston and electric power units. Hybrid powerplants bring together the benefits of more endurance while keeping the efficient power transfer associated with electric motors.
Visit and join EASA's General Aviation Community
If you are a General Aviation enthusiast, EASA's General Aviation Community is the place for you to meet and share your passion.
- Check out EASA's General Aviation Community.