Diamond and Safran Team Up to Develop Electric Training Aircraft

The two companies announced their partnership to create a new iteration of the DA40.

Diamond Aircraft and Safran Electrical & Power have announced an agreement to provide an electric motor for the all-electric eDA40 training aircraft.

The companies propose that the aircraft will be the first FAA Part 23 certified electric aircraft with DC fast charging, capable of fully recharging within 20 minutes. According to Diamond, the total flight time of the eDA40 will be up to 90 minutes “as the battery technologies evolve.”

“The DA40 is a proven aircraft, arousing worldwide interest among private pilots and professional flight training operators,” said Thierry Sieg, vice president of sales and marketing at Safran Electrical & Power.

“Creating an electric version and participating in the electrification of this bestseller aircraft is not only a technical challenge, but it is also a response to the growing global demand to decarbonize aviation using electric propulsion. This new contract demonstrates the success of our ENGINeUS product line and confirms the strong interest of the market in our approach to further increase the electric powertrain performance.”

Safran’s motor, the ENGINeUS 100, will deliver 130 kW maximum at takeoff power, with a fully integrated motor controller. According to Safran, the electric motor’s certification is expected to come mid-2023. For European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) certification on the airplane overall, that’s expected in late 2023 or early 2024.

“We are excited to announce the motor partner for the eDA40,” says Liqun Zhang, CEO Diamond Aircraft Industries Austria. “With Safran we are having an expert partner for electric propulsion systems aboard. The smart motor’s state-of-the-art technology including smart features paired with a well-advanced certification process is the logic choice for our eDA40. We are looking forward to the first flights scheduled for end [of] 2022.”

Initial flights for the eDA40 are currently scheduled for the second quarter of this year.

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