Beta Technologies new charging stations allowed its Alia-250 electric plane to complete a 1,400-mile test flight.
The new Beta Charge facilities will support charging both electric road vehicles and electric aircraft – specifically the Alia 250 eVTOL aircraft, which Beta first revealed in June of 2020.
Beta got to test out several of its first 10 charging stations when its Alia prototype completed a multi-stage trip across 1,400 miles, taking off from Plattsburgh Airport in upstate New York with a final destination of Bentonville, Arkansas. It made four stops along the way in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri, which aligns with its claimed range of 250 nautical miles (which roughly translates to 287 miles or 463 km). With a weight capacity of up to 1,400 lbs and room for six passengers, it isn’t setting
Along with the charging station, Beta also rolled out a new app would allow operators to locate the nearest charging station on their route and then begin the charging process once they’re on site. The payment processing function would store transaction details and charging histories for each vehicle. It could also be used to redeem any promotional vouchers that Beta might give out to customers. This works for planes and electric cars, mind you.
“We created our chargers to increase accessibility, which is why they are multimodal in design,” said Beta in a media release. “Each charging station in our network…supports the ground electric vehicles of today as well as the electric vehicles of tomorrow—so they can support other electric aircraft, not just our own.”
Beta hopes to acquire FAA certification for the Alia-250 in 2024, though the process for certification of electric aircraft remains an uncharted one.
SOURCE | IMAGE: PROTOCOL.
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