HX1E Electric Helicopter
Liaoning General Aviation Academy
Shenyang, Liaoning, China
Founded in 2011, the Liaoning General Aviation Academy, based in China, is dedicated to the research and development of green aircraft for general aviation use. The Academy is developing battery and hydrogen fuel cell powertrains for all electric two and four seat airplanes, a seaplane, a glider and an electric helicopter.
On July 11, 2020 the Academy made history by making the first successful crewed test flight in an electric helicopter in China. The Academy reported they made ground breaking research by overcoming problems which normally restrict the development of electric helicopters. Looking closely at the flight test, one can see the aircraft made an outside free flight with what appears to be an electric power chord connected to the helicopter, possibly powering the helicopter.
The helicopter pilot's controls are standard type helicopter controls with a cyclic stick, collective lever and two foot pedals. The cockpit instrument panel appear to be a glass cockpit with possibly some manual switches or dials. Safety features include a helmet and two shoulder straps for the pilot.
The Liaoning's electric helicopter looks not quite like but similar to Sikorsky's VS300 helicopter which first flew a crewed flight on Sept. 14, 1939. Both aircraft have a metal skeleton airframe, an open cockpit, have a single seat, are both small aircraft, have a main rotorblade, a rear tail rotor and have tricycle-type landing gear. Sikorsky's VS300 piston powered helicopter had three main rotorblades, a more complicated skeleton frame, most likely a bigger and heavier powertrain and wheeled landing gear. The Liaoning helicopter has two main rotorblades, a simplified airframe, a compact powertrain with three fixed landing struts (or legs).
Little is known about the electric helicopter because no articles are online and their website has nothing listed on the rotorcraft as of December 2020. Fortunately, several pictures were found on social media in July 2020 about the e-rotorcraft.
- Aircraft type: Electric helicopter
- Piloting and capacity: 1 pilot
- Cruise speed: 100 km/h (62 mph)
- Range: Unknown
- Maximum payload: 80 kg (176 lb)
- Rotorblades: 1 main rotorblade and 1 tail rotor
- Electric Motors: 1
- Power source: Batteries
- Cockpit: Open cockpit
- Fuselage: None, a metal skeleton airframe
- Landing gear: Three fixed landing leg type landing gear
- Liaoning General Aviation Academy website
- Liaoning General Aviation Research Institute website