NEWS Boeing, JetBlue Invest in Electric Plane Startup

Source: Zunum Aero/Popular Mechanics

The investment arms of Boeing and jet Blue are helping fund start-up Zunum Aero, an electric-hybrid plane manufacturer. Zunum are designing and building 10-50 seat planes for trips of up to 1125km (700 miles).

They aim to sell 10 seat electric-hybrid planes by 2022. The aircraft would travel at a speed of 545 km/h (340mph) at 25 000 feet. There are also plans to build aircraft with a 1000km (1600 mile) range by 2030.

The plane would use a turbo generator that would use jet fuel to charge a modular battery system in the wings. Upon landing the batteries could be charged on the ground or swapped out. They are being designed to fly with one pilot, with the possiblity of being flown remotely in the future.

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