Sorry for taking so long to update everyone on our project; it has been an amazing several months since we took delivery of our four Alpha Electros and started flying them!
Here are some of the highlights:
- We have accumulated about 40 hours of flight time across all four aircraft to date. They are a dream to fly with little to no vibration, nearly silent operation from the ground perspective, smooth power application, and very response handling.
- We have two airports set up with chargers currently; Fresno Chandler Executive (KFCH) and Reedley Municipal (O32). Flight operating limitations from the FAA restrict us from doing traffic pattern work at Chandler, so we use Reedley for that. There is currently an aircraft based at Reedley and three at Chandler and we are routinely flying back and forth between the two airports.
- Mendota recently got a charger circuit set up and we plan to have a charger placed there by early July so we can start doing flight operations to Mendota.
Everyone asks me about how long you can stay up on a charge, which is a very reasonable question. The answer is about 40 minutes and still land with over 20% State of Charge (SOC) remaining in the batteries. The 20% SOC level is what Pipistrel recommends as a minimum for landing. Below 20% SOC, the SOC bar on the EPSI570 (see photo below) turns red and you need to land and recharge the aircraft.