Quicksilver EMG Makes First Flight
January 30, 2014 - Adventure Aircraft, a subsidiary of Rainbow Aviation, made successful first flights of its new Electric Motor Glider 6 (EMG-6) at Corning (California) Municipal Airport in December. The aircraft is a joint collaboration between Adventure Aircraft and Quicksilver Aeronautics. The EMG-6 was piloted by aircraft designer Brian Carpenter - towed aloft by a 400-cc Honda quad runner.
Although the aircraft is equipped with a small electric motor to fit into the FAR Part 103 category (allowing for flight without an FAA pilot certificate), all of the initial flight tests were conducted as a pure glider without any of the drag reduction enhancements and without the use of power.
Flight testing will continue into the spring in several different configurations: pure glider, glider with a single-engine electric sustainer motor, 40-hp single-engine, twin-engine, and tri-motor. Testing will continue by evaluating several combinations of speed fairings, gap seals, and cockpit enclosures, most of which are manufactured from lightweight carbon-fiber materials.
The EMG-6 aircraft can be built as a single-place, FAR Part 103 ultralight and then legally converted at a later date into a two-place experimental aircraft. The folding wing and folding tail design reduces the machine's storage footprint, making it possible to fold the aircraft and store it in your garage at home.
With a gross weight design limit of 750 pounds, theoretical flights lasting as long as three hours are possible using current battery technology. The prototype aircraft will be flown initially with two 20-hp brushless Predator 37 motors manufactured by Plettenberg of Germany. The motors, controllers, batteries, and propellers are all off-the-shelf components currently used in the giant-scale, radio-controlled aircraft industry. Adventure Aircraft also feels there are several other viable powerplants that are currently available.
This aircraft can be built as an experimental amateur-built and can be flown with a fixed-wing sport pilot certificate without a glider rating as long as the aircraft is flown as a single-place aircraft. Additionally, a glider pilot can fly it as an electric-powered glider with multiple engines without a multiengine rating. No medical certificate is required.
Adventure Aircraft hopes to offer an entry-level kit near the $10,000 price range and is diligently working on a fast-build kit requiring less than 80 hours assembly time.
While Adventure Aircraft currently uses an ATV to tow the prototype, thousands of aircraft are capable of towing the EMG-6 (with a tow speed range from 30 to 60 mph). Learn more online about the EMG-6.