MIT demonstrated the world’s first airplane with an ion engine

Scientists from MIT demonstrated a working model of an airplane with a ion engine. They used electrodes with high voltage to ionize the air and accelerate it, and the resulting “ionic breeze” produced a thrust force opposite to the ion flow direction. In the future this concept can be used to equip more clean and quiet airplanes. But in the meantime feast your eyes on this pretty boy. Theoretical substantiation of the work was published in the journal Nature on November 21.

Since then, as the first plane went in flight, it took more than 100 years, but the principles of the movement of these aircraft — with propellers and turbines — has not changed much. Most of them worked on the engine, burning fuel.

The first ion airplane

Scientists from mit have proposed as alternatives to electrohidrodinamica in which the electric force acceleration of ions in the liquid. Their proposal does not include moving parts, virtually silent and requires no release of burning substances. The only problem is that airplanes with such solid state traction system is not yet flying.

In the video, scientists have demonstrated that a solid state traction system can support the flight, designed and running electrohidrodinamica propelled airplane, heavier than air. An airplane with a wingspan of five meters went in flight ten times and demonstrated a stable and sustainable movement. All systems power supplies, batteries, including a specially designed ultra-light converters (40 kV), was on Board.

At the moment it’s a proof of concept of health, but we can easily imagine the appearance of the aircraft with ion engines that will replace traditional aircraft running on combustible fuel.

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