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Pipistrel Taurus G4 Nominated for Collier Trophy


Pipistrel Taurus G4
The Pipistrel Taurus G4 won last year's NASA Green Flight Challenge.

February 9, 2012 – The electrically powered Pipistrel G4 that won NASA's Green Flight efficiency challenge is one of four aircraft nominated to win the National Aeronautic Association's 2012 Collier Trophy. The other finalists are the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, Lockheed C-5M Super Galaxy, and Gamera Human Powered Helicopter.

The Collier Trophy is awarded each year for "the greatest achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America." The achievement must have been demonstrated in actual use, not merely proposed or planned. Last year the Collier went to Sikorsky's X2 helicopter that demonstrated technology that advanced helicopter speed to new levels.

This year's Collier selection committee is a blue ribbon group that includes outstanding individuals from all areas of aviation. On the list are past trophy winners such as Burt Rutan - Voyager - and Jeff Pino of Sikorsky; Bobby Sturgell of Rockwell Collins for development of ADS-B; and Joe Lombardo of Gulfstream and the G-V trophy winner in 2003.

The Collier selection committee will meet on March 12 and announce the winner the following day. The formal presentation will be on May 10 at the Collier Dinner in Arlington, Virginia. The Collier Trophy award, which dates back more than 100 years, is administered by the NAA.

To win NASA's Green Flight Challenge the twin-fuselage Pipistrel G4 airplane used battery power to fly more than 250 miles at an average speed greater than 100 mph using the equivalent of 1 gallon of fuel per each of the four passengers to complete the course.

The Boeing 787 is, of course, the first commercial airline jet to be made extensively of composite materials and sets new standards in fuel efficiency and performance.

The Gamera Human-Powered helicopter is a four main rotor design with a single human as a powerplant. The ultra lightweight machine was built by students at the University of Maryland and successfully hovered last year.

The C-5M Super Galaxy is the result of a re-engine and avionics upgrade for Lockheed's famous four-engine transport Starlifter. The new GE engines give the C-5M shorter takeoff capability, quicker climb, and longer range because of improved fuel efficiency. The C-5M overhaul program will allow the airplane to serve for decades to come saving huge sums for the defense budget.


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