NASA is set to start high-voltage functional ground testing of the agency’s first all-electric X-plane, the X-57 Maxwell, which will perform flights to help develop certification standards for emerging electric aircraft. NASA is also supporting these new electric aircraft by developing quiet, efficient, reliable technology these vehicles will need in routine use.
Significant progress is being made in preparation for NASA’s first all-electric X-plane, the X-57 Maxwell. As NASA completes tasks for X-57’s functional ground testing at its Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California, working toward taxi testing and first flight, assembly and qualification tests are underway on two critical components of the X-57 vehicle at NASA’s prime contractor for the project, Empirical Systems Aerospace, or ESAero, of San Luis Obispo, California. These components include the electric cruise motors, which will power X-57 in flight, and the future high-aspect ratio wing that will fly on the aircraft in X-57’s final configuration.
The first all-electric configuration of NASA's X-57 Maxwell now is at the agency's Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California. The X-57, NASA's first all-electric experimental aircraft, or X-plane—and the first crewed X-plane in two decades—was delivered by Empirical Systems Aerospace (ESAero) of San Luis Obispo, California on Wednesday, October 2, in the first of three configurations as an all-electric aircraft, known as Modification II, or Mod II.
As preparations continue for the X-57 Maxwell's arrival at NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center in California in October, testing on the wing that will be integrated into the final configuration of the piloted experimental aircraft is complete.
Empirical Systems Aerospace, Inc. (ESAero), a leading Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) and Urban Air Mobility (UAM) System design, development and manufacturing services provider announced today receipt of a follow-on purchase order from NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center for the X-57 'Maxwell', the first all-electric X-plane, for Wing and Distributed Electric Propulsion System Integration. ESAero has previously completed multiple contracts for system analysis and design phases, while wing fabrication, load testing, and integration is currently underway.
Formed in 2003, ESAero has been serving the needs of the engineering industry through its work on entrepreneurial concept development, aircraft modifications for the military, and commercial conceptual air vehicle designs. Learn more about ESAero's projects and services.