A Pennsylvania-based team called Pipistrel-USA has recently won the NASA CAFE Green Flight Challenge after taking the first place with their electric plane called the Taurus G4, that was able to fly 200 miles in less than two hours.
The contest, sponsored by Google, was created in order to spur development of electric airplanes and efficient aircraft designs and the prize was $1.35 million.
“NASA congratulates Pipistrel-USA.com for proving that ultra-efficient aviation is within our grasp. Today we’ve shown that electric aircraft have moved beyond science fiction and are now in the realm of practice,” said Joe Parrish, NASA’s acting chief technologist at the NASA Headquarters in Washington.
The contest rules were as follows: to win the NASA CAFE Green Flight Challenge, an airplane had to fly for 200 miles in two hours while using less than one gallon of fuel per occupant, or the equivalent in electricity.
The first and second place were occupied by electric airplanes. According yo NASA, 14 teams registered for the competition but only three were able to met the contest’s requirements.