This Week's Herman Trend Alert

in Normal 2.0


  The Herman Trend Alert

June 26, 2019

Coming to your Airport Soon

If you are a regular reader of The Herman Trend Alert, you know we have covered electric cars; recently at the Paris Air Show, the Caribbean air carrier Cape Air debuted the first all-electric passenger plane. The plane has a maximum range of 650 miles and will travel at speeds between 240 and 279 knots. As with all 100 percent-electric aircraft, Alice doesn't need fuel to fly. Moreover, after only 30 minutes of charging on the ground, the plane can add an hour of flying time. Weighing 8,200 pounds, more than 60 percent of Alice's maximum takeoff weight consists of its battery.

Two aerospace giants have developed hybrids
Though not fully electric, two major aircraft manufacturers have introduced hybrid-electric planes. United Technologies has launched development of a hybrid-electric plane strangely titled "Project 804." At the same time, Boeing has invested in the hybrid-electric aircraft startup Zunum Aero, although it was reported that Boeing had financing problems earlier this year. According to UBS, by 2040, the hybrid-electric aviation market is expected to be up to $178 billion dollars. the green aircraft race only stands to intensify. However, these giants have not yet announced all-electric vehicles.

What is Cape Air?
Cape Air has actually become an important transportation provider between communities in the continental United States and those in the Caribbean. To this point, most of Cape Air's flights have been operated with a fleet of 88 small, twin-engine Cessna 402s. Each 402 features only nine seats---including the seat most of us would expect would be reserved for the copilot.

Cape Air's coming fleet
Enter the "Alice." Beginning in three short years, in 2022, the airline will begin to take delivery of its first all-electric plane from Israel's Eviation Aircraft. The Israeli company made big news at the recent Paris Air Show last week. In 2017, Eviation made its Paris entrance with a technology pre-production demonstration model. Then this year, the leading-edge aircraft manufacturer returned with a flightworthy prototype.

A chance to "kick the tires"
At the Paris Air Show, attendees had an opportunity to see and sit in a "real" aircraft that will really fly shortly, but only when the company receives approval from the Federal Aeronautics Administration (FAA) to begin testing.

Eviation and Cape Air---a mutually beneficial partnership
Last week, Eviation shared the news of its double-digit Cape Air Alice deal. These additions complement Cape Air's existing Cessna fleet; coincidentally, both aircraft carry exactly nine passengers. At $4 million, Alice's list price may seem reasonable.

The future of electric planes
Just as we will see an increasing number of electric cars, so should we expect to see an increasing number of electric aircraft. As a Road Warrior, I wonder if they will be quieter? We can always hope.

Special thanks to Brian Kelly and his crew at for covering this break-through development.

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