By Elaine Kauh
The Hypstair hybrid-electric powertrain ran for the first time this month, launching a test series for the project led by Slovenian aircraft maker Pipistrel. Hypstair, which has been making the rounds at European aviation events, features 200 kilowatts of takeoff power and 150 kilowatts of continuous power suitable for a light GA aircraft. It can run on batteries, an aircraft generator, or both. The first test took place at Pipistrel’s factory in a test airframe, the company announced Thursday. Takeoff power was achieved using a battery combined with power from a turbonormalized engine-driven generator.
Pipistrel, which produces the all-electric Alpha Electro trainer and electric or hybrid options for its series of light airplanes, said the Hypstair project “represents a major step in the direction of a hybrid aircraft and an opportunity for Pipistrel and other general aviation aircraft manufacturers.” The components are produced by German company Siemens AG, which has developed a more powerful 260-kilowatt electric motor and foresees hybrid-electric propulsion powering airliners in the coming decades. The Hypstair project is supported by a European Union technological research program and also has partnered with the University of Pisa in Italy and Slovenia’s University of Maribor.
View a video of Hypstair’s recent test here.