NASA is working to shape the future of air transport, it has announced that it’s conducting research on a unique plane that’s powered by 14 electric motors. The plane NASA is working on is called X-57 or “Maxwell,” and it’s the agency’s first X-plane in nearly a decade. The plan with this project is to develop technologies that reduce emissions, reduce noise, and increase fuel efficiency.
“With the return of piloted X-planes to NASA’s research capabilities – which is a key part of our 10-year-long New Aviation Horizons initiative – the general aviation-sized X-57 will take the first step in opening a new era of aviation,” said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden.
NASA has named this plane after Jams Clerk Maxwell, the 19th century Scottish physicist, is going to be built by the Scalable Convergent Electric Propulsion Technology Operations Research (Sceptor) project. The plane is a modified Tecnam P2006T that’s kitted with 14 electric motors for propulsion.
The idea is to prove that using that many motors will reduce the amount of energy needed for the plan to reach a cruising speed of 175mph.
It’s obviously going to take a lot of time before this experiment leads to something concrete that can be used to replace existing planes, nevertheless, the work continues to craft a greener and more sustainable future.