Electric Belite SkyDock Flies After Just 2 Months

Less than two months ago I wrote about the first flight of the Belite Skydock. It's a spindly little airplane, but made with modern technology and materials. It promises fun, affordable aviation. Now, in just two months, they've gone from first flight of their design to first flight using a pair of electric motors.

Their video shows that these little RC aircraft motors are enough to takeoff and climb from a rough grass runway. They cost $400 each, nowhere near the $4500 it'll cost you for the Poloni engine on the gas powered version. Those electric motors will also be cheaper to operate...you could even keep your batteries charged using solar, wind, or other renewable energy sources. In a world where the expense of flying deters many of us from doing what we love, aircraft this cheap to operate could be a great option. The SkyDock isn't going to take you very far very fast, but it looks like it could be just as fun as anything else out there. In fact, with that open canopy it would be great for flying around the flagpole. If you're trying to accumulate the 1500 hours now required to get an ATP and work as an airline pilot, you could do a lot worse than logging Multi-engine PIC time in a SkyDock while enjoying the fresh air thousands of feet above the mere mortals of our world.

Their pricing page shows a basic kit costing just over $11,000, while a kit that includes all machined components comes in a more than $20,000. That's before instruments and (a) motor(s). Plus, it doesn't seem like this kit is going to be the fast-build kind offered by many companies these days. It sounds like it'll take a bit of work to turn the pieces into something flyable. However, for the person looking for cheap, fun aviation it could be a great answer.

I'm excited to see that electric aviation is becoming more practical and that companies aren't afraid to innovate like this. I'm impressed that Belite was able to take their existing design and transform it into a flying electric airplane in less than two months. Congrats to the Belite team. I'm looking forward to sitting in one of your airplanes and making buzzing noises at an airshow sometime soon.