Pipistrel Taurus G4 Nominated for Collier Trophy

Electric four-seater will go head to head with Boeing’s 787.

Pipistrel Taurus G4

Pipistrel Taurus G4

Pipistrel Taurus G4

The Pipistrel Taurus G4, a four-seat electric aircraft that won NASA's $1.35 million Green Flight Challenge last year, has been nominated for this year's prestigious Collier Trophy.

The competition this year is especially tough. The National Aeronautic Association named four nominees for the 2011 Robert J. Collier Trophy, one of which -- the Boeing 787 Dreamliner -- would appear to be the front runner. The other nominees are the Lockheed C-5M Super Galaxy, the Gamera human-powered helicopter, and Pipistrel's Taurus G4 electric-powered airplane.

The Collier award has been a benchmark of aviation and aerospace achievement for more than 100 years. Awarded annually “for the greatest achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America,” it has been bestowed upon some of the most important projects, programs, people and accomplishments in the nation’s history.

Past winners include the crews of Apollo 11 and Apollo 8, the Mercury 7, Scott Crossfield, Elmer Sperry and Howard Hughes. Projects and programs that have won the Collier Trophy include the B-52, the Polaris Missile, the Surveyor Moon Landing Program, the Boeing 747, the Cessna Citation, the Gulfstream V, the F-22, and the International Space Station.

"We are very proud of the nominations we received for the 2011 Collier Trophy," said NAA Chairman Walter J. Boyne. "Each of them -- in their own way -- mark significant progress in the advancement of aviation and aerospace on the planet, and we certainly welcome them to the Collier selection process."

The twin-fuselage Taurus G4 is the world's first four-seat electric aircraft. The G4 flew 250 miles with an average speed higher than 100 mph on fuel consumption of less than one gallon per passenger.