France’s VoltAero conducted the first flight of its Cassio 1 hybrid-electric conventional takeoff and landing (eCTOL) aircraft on March 10 at its Royan-Médis Aérodrome facility. The testbed aircraft was powered by two 80-hp (60-kW) Safran ENGINeUS 45 electric motors with forward-facing propellers, three 80-hp Emrax electric motors driving a rear pusher prop, and a 402-hp (300-kW) modified Nissan V6 internal combustion engine to provide redundancy, supplementary power and battery charging. On March 28, VoltAero removed the combustion engine to begin the next phase of flight tests — more heavily relying on its hybrid-electric setup.
Meanwhile, Bye Aerospace of Colorado may suffer delays in the planned 2021 certification of its eFlyer 2 CTOL aircraft due to COVID-19 teleworking and probable suspension of test flights, according to Aviation Today on April 14.
This could also delay California-based Quantum XYZ’s plans to provide intercity travel via the eFlyers in the Los Angeles area under the company’s project Quantum Y, also originally slated for 2021. (Sources: VoltAero, AIN, Aviation Today)