From the frozen north of Finland comes the news that FlyNano has flown its electric prototype. Originally planned to have both two-stroke and electric powerplants, the five-meter span joined-wing flying boat is now only electric, its makers citing the strides made in development of motors and batteries in the last several years for their decision.
Designed to stay under 70 kilograms (154 pounds) empty weight, FlyNano has a maximum takeoff weight of 200 kilograms (440 pounds). Its small size and light weight make it possible to fly, based on the video, but with no specifications for motor, controller and battery.
A company press release gives a “speed range of 70 – 140 kilometers per hour (43-87 mph) with a service ceiling of 3 kilometers (9,820 feet). FlyNano’s true airspeed is about 140 km/h at 75% power with a theoretical operational distance of 70 km (43 miles).” The statement of “true airspeed” causes one to wonder at what altitude this speed would be achieved. Would the rate of climb in its half-hour battery endurance allow it to reach its cruise altitude? The airplane, like water-borne personal watercraft, seems more destined for low-altitude frolics.
Last year, when designer Aki Suokas displayed his miniature flying boat at AERO-Expo in Friedrichshafen, he had promoted the electrically-powered series E 200, and two versions with two-stroke engines, but again unspecified output. The emphasis instead was on fun. “FlyNano is for the fun of flying – no passengers, no cargo – just you, FlyNano and the endless blue. If you’ve ever had a pilot’s license, or had experience with ultras or micros, you’ll fly Nano right out of the box. The rest of you will need to learn the simple rules of the air. Minimum red tape – maximum fun.”
Illustrations show the little craft darting about, dipping its wings into the water and generally being used as an aerial JetSki®. Whether such maneuvers will meet with smiling faces from federal authorities remains to be seen, but, according to FlyNano, 35 airplanes have been sold and development continues. First deliveries are expected by the end of 2013.
As of last year, prices were around 27,000 euros ($33,750) and a trailer/storage box added 5,300 euros ($6,625).