Rolls-Royce, renowned in the aviation industry for its engines, announced this week that its all-electric Spirit of Innovation made its maiden flight lasting 15 minutes. According to the manufacturer, this flight marked “the beginning of an intensive phase of flight testing, in which we will collect important data on the aircraft’s power supply and propulsion system.”
Rolls-Royce claims the single-seat aircraft has “the largest battery ever built for an aircraft.” The battery contains 6,000 cells, and the power of the three-engine propulsion system is 400 kW (more than 500 hp). It is expected that the aircraft will be able to set a world speed record – the design speed exceeds 480 km / h.
The electric propulsion system developed for Spirit of Innovation will find use in an all-electric commuter passenger aircraft being developed by Rolls-Royce in partnership with Tecnam for Widerøe, the largest regional airline in Scandinavia. The partners plan that it will be ready for commercial operation in 2026.