Yuneec E430 : An Electric Plane Made in China and the Triumph of Chinese Technology
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Yuneec E430 : An Electric Plane Made in China and the Triumph of Chinese Technology

Yuneec E430 : An Electric Plane Made in China and the Triumph of Chinese Technology

Yuneec E430 in Flight

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                  Chinese technology has taken the lead when it successfully flown its first attempt at a two- seat electric aircraft aimed for commercial production on 12 June 2009. For years it may be worth considering that many Chinese built scaled RC planes and helicopters has established a niche market worldwide. From warbirds to advanced 4th and 5th generation fighter jets, one would be amazed seeing an SR-71 Blackbird, an F-14 Tomcat or an F-117 Stealth fighter thundering above at the distinct whizzing sound of brushless motors powered by rechargeable lithium polymer (LiPo) battery packs. Except for the fact that these are scaled model RC planes, US stealth technology and all the clandestine efforts that gave rise to the X-planes had been cleverly replicated (only at a smaller scale).

Soviet Mig-21 Fishbed

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Chinese Chengdu Jian J-7

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Eurofighter Typhoon

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Chinese Chengdu J-10

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                  It is actually less surprising that Chinese engineering should take this bold step at something bigger with a man aboard on a full scale aircraft design. During the years of the cold war, China has demonstrated more than such in capability when it built exact copies of Soviet Mig-21 Fishbeds through the Chengdu Jian-7 and later the much elaborate Chengdu J-10 which was a look alike of the British Experimental Aircraft Program prototype that gave such by-product we knew as the Eurofighter Typhoon. If you think about helicopters, check out a Eurocopter AS 365N Dauphin and how it compares to a Chinese built Harbin Z-9 which actually resulted from a collaboration with Harbin Aircraft Manufacturing Corporation and Aerospatiale of France (now Eurocopter) back in 1980. 

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                  At the moment China had just been showing her modesty with an aeronautical feat that is a bit fanciful and childlike considering what it had shown in the past. Even such credible aircraft manufacturing companies like Boeing and Cessna have licensed certain aircraft models to be built thereat. But where Chinese engineering and manpower had been showing much promise to the rest of the world in a state of global recession, China benefits from all these opportunities as she offers the upper hand to let her factories assemble state of the art mobile phones, desktop and laptop computers, automobiles and aircraft duly licensed from its manufacturers. Try to check your appliances and accessories and see for yourself any contraption unmarked with a sticker that says “Made in China”. You maybe amused to see a Sony VAIO which supposed to be made in Japan and a Dell Streak tablet phone made in the USA but realize it otherwise. Well, there’s nothing wrong with Chinese engineering, we could just wait and see what we’ll have next when we see a sleeping giant awakes.


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Comments (6)

Beautiful planes and enjoyable read. Thanks.

Excellent article

Thanks for the comments, Chan, Rae. I suppose Chan could relate to this considering this is a big boost to his homeland's economy.

Another wonder issue about aircraft and China's technology as well, thanks Will.

Another fabulous aviation write. You are at your best when writing about aviation.

Wonderful article! Keep up the great work and I really love the pictures you provide. Well done