Published on August 17th, 2019 | by Nicolas Zart0
Bye Aerospace & OXIS Energy To Commercialize Lithium-Sulfur Batteries For Urban Air Mobility (UAM)
August 17th, 2019 by Nicolas Zart
Bye Aerospace is an extremely busy electric aviation company developing the future of our urban air mobility (UAM) world. It has two electric airplanes (eCTOL) and is working on an electric vertical take-off & landing (eVTOL) project with Uber Elevate. But that’s not all. It is also partnering with another two companies focusing on pre‐crash sensing technologies, parachute ballistic recovery systems, landing gear‐airframe crashworthy structural concepts, high-energy absorbing seats, and advanced restraints.
Bye Aerospace Is Everywhere In The UAM Universe
Besides all of this, Bye is testing its own eCTOL eFlyer2 and eFlyer4 with newly acquired Rolls-Royce Siemens e-propulsion electric motors with apparently great success. Its partnership with BRS is developing the only certifiable ballistic parachute system on the market to date for its eCTOL.
And the news still pours in, including the announcement of 624 commitments for purchase, with 170 deposits, 318 memoranda of understanding (MOUs), and 136 MOU options. Add to this the 60 eFlyer2 aircraft from Norway’s OSM Group that we previously reported and 100 eFlyer4 units from BlackBird air taxi.
But wait, that’s not all!
The other big news is that Bye Aerospace and Oxis Energy, a UK lithium-sulfur (Li-S) battery development company, say they will commercialize a 400 Wh/gr Li-S battery system for eCTOL and eVTOL aircraft. The 5-year battery project aims for 400 kWh this year. However, the companies also said they were working on a 500 Wh/gr version of it.
Asked why Li-S, Huw Hampson-Jones, OXIS Energy CEO said their Li-S technology is more than 50% lighter than the current Li-ion systems.
Most of the news focuses on eVTOL aircraft, leaving eCTOL airplanes to quietly mature. Pipistrel is the only conventional electric airplane maker, and Ivan Boscaroll told me that he didn’t understand why after none of the promising electric aviation projects he’s seen over the past decade haven’t made it to market.
We’re keeping our eyes open, and we’ll see what happens with the Bye Aerospace & OXIS Energy partnership. No matter what, though, eCTOL airplanes will play an important role in the future of UAM, since they carry potentially greater payloads for longer distances.