Details on the effort:
Oct 2, 2009 Sarl Razeebuss Aircraft has moved on to their next level and it looks quite refined. They are building their first batch of 10 units which will should be on sale to the public by early spring. Fortunately, it now includes rudimentary prop protection, mostly to allow forward launches in no wind while providing some hand/leg protection. With no netting, this obviously isn't a machine for beginners.
Their mission is different than most, focusing on getting soaring pilots aloft without needing mountains or tows. Such a mission is reflected in the minimalist and clean cage design and folding prop. Of course it would work for tooling around, too, but you'd probably want bigger batteries for that.
They've now adopted the Fresh Breeze drive system and are using a more conventional prop. The designer/builder hopes to make a trip to the U.S.A. and I'd love to fly one of his creations if given the chance. For soaring pilots especially this could be a great ride to cloud base.
It won't be cheap, as you can see from the sidebar specs and prices, but then nothing new ever is and Lithium Polymer batteries are still extremely expensive. At the sizes required of one pound model planes they're not bad, but when scaled up to loft 250 pounds of paramotor and pilot, the required power, and thus battery size (read expense) skyrockets. Here are some pictures of the craft in action.
Nov 17, 2007 Electric paramotors are an elegant way for soaring enthusiasts to climb into thermalville. French constructor Razeebuss Aircrafts is working to satisfy their desire with the Razeebuss electric paramotor.
The Razeebuss has been test flown to an altitude of about 1500 feet, certainly enough to catch a thermal. As of this date there is only one prototype flying with another on the way. I have talked with one pilot who has seen it fly and several European free-flight magazines have featured the machine.
It goes all out for performance, especially power off. In their drive to decrease drag they have eliminated the protective cage for a huge premium of risk. It is, of course, incredibly likely for casual pilots using such a machine frequently that they will lose a limb or worse. It happens if the pilot runs afoul of the propeller arc accidentally or it unexpededly goes to power with a body part in the way.
Maybe a folding cage could be devised that must be in place for the prop to spin. That protects both the cage and soft operator. You launch with the cage locked in the extended position. Then, after shutting down, push a release and the cage folds back.
Having made the risk trade-off clear, I'm a big fan of letting the buyer choose his/her own danger level and only want to provide education. I'm also glad to see these folks innovate and hope, like all efforts, that they are successful at bringing their machine to market.
For more information, visit www.Razeebusss.com.
1. Motor & folding prop.
2. Power pack. It's worn on front which better balances the motor so hang points can be more like a free flying with low hook-in points.
Engine: HPD 10 developed by Werner Eck and Joachim Geiger. More info here.
Battery: 12-cel (48v) 40 Amp-Hr Kokam Lipo
Thrust: 77 Lbs. Note that in 3 months they plan on offering a 14 cell (58v), 32 Amp-Hr arrangement that will have just under 100 lbs of thrust.
Weight: 37 lbs paramotor, 29 lbs battery, total weight 66 lbs.
Endurance (Full Power): 17 minutes.
Cost: US $15,000, extra battery is US $4600 (using exchange rate on 10/01/2009).
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