NASA awards $ 74.3 million to MagniX to demonstrate electric aviation technology

A Cessna Grand Caravan equipped with a MagniX propulsion system takes off over Moses Lake, Washington, for a flight test. (MagniX via YouTube)

MagniX, based in Everett, Wash., Will receive $ 74.3 million from NASA over the next five years to demonstrate electric propulsion technologies for airplanes.

The fixed-price / cost-share award is awarded as part of the NASA Electric Powertrain Flight Demonstration Program, or EPFD, which aims to introduce electric powertrain technologies to U.S. aviation fleets in the United States. later in 2035.

Another company, GE Aviation, based in Cincinnati, is receiving $ 179 million under the same program.

“This NASA award is a testament to the fantastic work the MagniX team does every day,” MagniX CEO Roei Ganzarski told GeekWire in an email. “This program will make it possible to operate next-generation commercial aircraft. We are proud to be part of the same cohort with a great company like GE. “

Robert Pearce, NASA’s associate administrator for aerospace research, said the support should accelerate the transition to electric aviation and be a “catalyst for economic growth.”

“We expect to achieve significant improvements in the economic and environmental performance of subsonic transport through the incorporation of these new alternative propulsion and energy technologies into the fleet,” Pearce said today in a press release.

Over the five-year term of the award, MagniX and GE Aviation are to demonstrate electric aircraft propulsion technologies, also known as EAPs, that could be used in commercial aircraft, including passenger aircraft. short distance and regional. They will also collaborate on other NASA projects that touch on electric propulsion, flight test instrumentation and data analysis.

“GE Aviation and MagniX will conduct ground and flight demonstrations of the megawatt-class integrated powertrain system to validate their concepts and project benefits for future EAP aircraft configurations,” said Gaudy Bezos-O’Connor, EPFD project manager at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Virginia. . “These demonstrations will help identify and remove technical barriers and integration risks. It will also help inform the development of standards and regulations for future EAP systems. “

MagniX is already working on demonstrations of electric aircraft propulsion, using its Magni350 and Magni650 electric motors. It has partnered with Vancouver, British Columbia-based Harbor Air to obtain a fleet of modernized electric seaplanes certified for short-haul passenger flights, and has also made deals with Universal Hydrogen, Sydney Seaplanes, Faradair, H55 and Blade.

In January, the company moved its headquarters from Redmond, Washington to a new 40,000 square foot manufacturing building in Everett.

MagniX is majority owned by the Clermont group based in Singapore. A sister company called Eviation has its own manufacturing facility in Arlington, Wash., And MagniX is committed to building powertrains for Eviation’s all-electric Alice aircraft. Last month DHL Express announced it was ordering 12 Alice eCargo planes from Eviation.

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