>>All competing electrically powered gliders carry the batteries in the wings.

Well I can think of one only which has the batteries in the wings. The
others appear to have them in the fuselage and have done for almost a
decade before the ASG 32 El.

Having experience of exploding batteries, I always assumed that this
was so the burning battery pack could melt its way through the
fuselage floor as a safety measure. The pilot may not be so lucky with
the ECU if that gets torched.

>> it also requires wing modifications if ever a new battery generation
comes along.

Exactly. And while 2 strokes have a lifespan of perhaps 40 - 100 years
(between the Rotax 505 and the Silk version of the Solo) electric
motors and batteries have a technology turnover of what? 4-10 years?

We currently use Swiss/German electric motors in a part which was
designed 20 years ago. During the last 10-12 years we have used the 3
phase induction version, an in-runner. While the motor is moderately
reliable, the control circuits are not and the manufacturer has
changed these at least once every 2 years with each being a different
form factor and requiring a different housing. It may be that the
Swiss know bugger all about electronics… I am certainly beginning to
think so.

The alternative would be to buy a simple old-fashioned Mabuchi motor
similar to those used in almost all battery drills such as Makita. In
quantity, probably under $2. That compares well with the $450 for the
Swiss version.

Sailplane manufacturers are in a similar position to us. They don't
have the volume to be able to control the manufacturing of
non-airframe parts. The question is whether they have the will to
continue to offer upgrades to legacy gliders and what it will cost. In
many cases, when you add the R&D and certification and EASA, you'll be
looking at well north of 300% above market price.

History suggests that some manufacturers do not if the will to keep
supporting old technology if the Ventus story is correct.

 D
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