Huge markets are expected for the versatile, eco-friendly 2-seat RX1E
China will soon put its first domestically developed electric aircraft into mass production, and designers expect a huge market at home and abroad.
"The RX1E is scheduled to receive its airworthiness certificate from the Civil Aviation Administration of China before the end of this year, with production expected to start next year," Yang Fengtian, an academic at the Chinese Academy of Engineering told China Daily on Thursday.
Yang was speaking at the 10th China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition, commonly known as Airshow China, in Zhuhai, Guangdong province.
"This will be the first electric aircraft to be certified by our civil aviation authority. The success of the plane means China has become a technology leader in this filed," he added.
Yang, who is also president of Shenyang Aerospace University in Liaoning province, headed the development of the two-seater, light-duty aircraft. Two prototypes of the plane are at the air show, one of which takes part in a performance each day during the event.
An electric aircraft runs on electric motors, with electricity coming from fuel cells, solar cells, ultracapacitors, power beaming or batteries.