Smith presents Randall Fishman with the 48th annual Raspet
Award. Photo by Amy Gesch
honored Randall Fishman, EAA 794189, of Cliffside Park, New Jersey,
with the 2008 Dr. August Raspet Memorial Award for his
accomplishment in developing and flying an electric-powered
aircraft. Adam Smith, EAA vice president of membership, presented
the award to Fishman at the end of the electric power forum on
Thursday afternoon, to a standing ovation from the sizable crowd
that gathered to participate in the discussion.
Raspet award has been presented annually since 1960 to a person who
has made an outstanding contribution to the advancement of light
flew his first electric-powered aircraft, a weight-shift trike,
during EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2007 and received the grand champion
and innovation award in the ultralight category. This year he is
displaying his ElectraFlyer-C, an electric-powered, single-seat
airplane, that made its first flight earlier this summer. You can
find the ElectraFlyer C parked under the wing of the Piedmont
Airlines DC-3 on the south side of AeroShell Square.
president of Electric Aircraft Corp., put together the powerplant
package that is based around an 18-hp electric motor. The
ElectraFlyer-C cruises at 70 mph, stalls at 45 mph, and has a top
speed of 90 mph and a flight duration of 1-1/2 hours. The motor
direct drives a 45-inch, ground-adjustable, two-blade Powerfin
carbon-fiber propeller, which lifts the ElectraFlyer-C at a climb
rate of 500 to 600 fpm. Takeoff rpm is 2800.
motor draws power from a custom-built lithium polymer battery pack;
batteries are projected to have a life of 1,000 cycles. Weighing in
at 78 pounds, the battery pack produces 5.6 kilowatt hours and can
be recharged in as little as two hours using a 220-volt charger (or
six hours with a 110-volt charger). The cost for a full recharge is 70
cents with the 110-volt charger. Fishman says it’s feasible to
carry a small 110-volt charger as baggage on cross-country flights.
will like flying the airplane because there’s no vibration and it
is almost completely silent in the air," says Fishman, adding
that you can listen to your iPod or use a handheld radio without
needing a helmet while in flight. The Electric Aircraft Corp. does
not sell the airplane but does offer complete powerplant packages,
including the motor and controller. For more information, visit www.ElectraFlyer.com.
August "Gus" Raspet was a professor at Mississippi State
University and avid light aircraft enthusiast. He was instrumental
in elevating the aeronautical engineering program at Mississippi
A&M College, as it was originally known, into one of the nation’s
pre-eminent aerophysics research centers. The Raspet Flight Research
Laboratory in Starkville, Mississippi, was completed in 1962.
Lifetime EAA member
Craig Willan, president of Omega Engineering, an
aerospace-engineering and consulting firm, moderated the electric
aircraft panel, which included Fishman along with Pete Buck and John
Monnett of Sonex Aircraft LLC; Erik Lindbergh, grandson of Charles
Lindbergh and chairman of the Lindbergh Foundation; David Palombo,
president of Aveox Inc., a manufacturer of brushless DC motors and
controllers; and Dr. Morton Grosser, a technology consultant and
venture capital investor.