B.C. company using electric plane to lay groundwork for sustainable aviation

Click to play video: 'Electric aircraft set to take off in B.C.'
Electric aircraft set to take off in B.C.
The future of flight has just arrived in B.C. A Campbell River flight school received delivery of its newest airplane, which looks similar to its other training aircraft but with one major difference. Kylie Stanton reports – Feb 22, 2024

A Vancouver Island company says it is the first in the province to own and operate an electric airplane that will be used for training for the country.

Sealand Flight Ltd.’s all-electric Velis Electro aircraft aims to “lay the groundwork” for sustainable aviation in Canada, and has arrived in Campbell River, B.C.

From the outside looking in, it’s like any other airplane but, to set it apart, it obviously has no gas tank.

“This aircraft is the only certified electric airplane in the world,” Bill Alder said, Sealand Flight’s president. “Electric airplanes are coming.”

Click to play video: 'B.C. woman removed from flight for using washroom too many times'
B.C. woman removed from flight for using washroom too many times

The all-electric aircraft arrived in Campbell River this past weekend, where it was unboxed and assembled within an hour.

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The aircraft weighs roughly 600 kilograms and has a range of 50 minutes with a 10-minute reserve. The battery, much like a tank of gas, needs to be replenished.

“We’re in the process of putting charging stations in Powell River, Courtenay and Qualicum,” Alder said.

But now, Sealand Flight said the real work begins.

In March, technicians from Pipistrel, the aircraft manufacturer, will be hosting a week-long training course in Campbell River.  Several industry partners, including Transport Canada, will be attending.

The first flight date has not been scheduled but Sealand Flight expects take off sometime in March.

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