Norway’s Equator Aircraft has announced its intention to compete in the Air Race E, touted as the world’s first consisting of only electric aircraft. The inaugural Air Race E will be held in 2021, and it now lists 10 teams making their plans to participate.
Equator Aircraft’s team will be led by founder, CEO, and chief designer Tomas Brødreskift. He said, “The Air Race E initiative is a great opportunity to continue our work in electric aviation. The race environment allows us to explore the extreme performance characteristics of our electric powertrain, as we push the components to their utmost limits in a safe environment. Lessons from the championship will be transferred to the factory to improve the performance and design of our electric consumer-based seaplanes.”
Other members of the team include pilot Rein Inge Hoff and team leader Øystein Solheim-Aune. The company developed an electrically powered seaplane in 2018, the Equator P2 Xcursion, which made its first flight in July 2018—and uses a 97 kW Engiro electric motor and a “range-extender” 57 kW Wankel-type rotary motor, which bumps its projected 200-km electric-powered range to 1,000 km, according to the company.
The team will compete in Air Race E under a new company, Electric Aircraft Propulsion AS (EAP). The Formula-1-style race is planned as the first in a series, in which entrants will fly with up to 7 other aircraft simultaneously around a 5-km closed circuit.