Innovation

Startup reveals ambitious electric plane plan

File photo: An E-Fan aircraft is seen on the tarmac for its first public flight during the e-Aircraft Day at the Bordeaux Merignac airport, southwestern France, April 25, 2014. The all-electric plane E-Fan, developed by Airbus Group, is 6.7 metres long with a 9.5 metre wingspan, and has two electric turbines with a total power of 60kW. Its has a cruising speed of 160 km/h (99 mph) for about an hour of flight time. (REUTERS/Regis Duvignau)

File photo: An E-Fan aircraft is seen on the tarmac for its first public flight during the e-Aircraft Day at the Bordeaux Merignac airport, southwestern France, April 25, 2014. The all-electric plane E-Fan, developed by Airbus Group, is 6.7 metres long with a 9.5 metre wingspan, and has two electric turbines with a total power of 60kW. Its has a cruising speed of 160 km/h (99 mph) for about an hour of flight time. (REUTERS/Regis Duvignau)

A UK startup is developing an electric plane that it says will one day carry passengers between London and Paris.

The Wright One, currently in development from Wright Electric, would carry 150 people on trips spanning less than 300 miles. By cutting out the heavy cost of jet fuel, air travel costs could drop significantly.

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News of the proposed plane was first reported on BBC News.

In order to cut the expense of air travel, it would need battery technology to continue dropping, bringing the costs of lithium-ion batteries down; this would be done in order to give it the required power for the range needed.

Wright Electric, led by founder Jeff Engler, is currently in the process of pitching investors on its plans for electric-powered flights. As part of the presentation, its goal is to make short-haul flights, which account for 30% of all global flights, be powered by an electric plane in the next 20 years.

Engler said there would be no need for planes to sit around and wait for batteries to recharge -- the design allows for batteries to be swapped out and then recharged separately.

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Wright faces competition in the space from France-based Airbus, which is said to be developing its own electric plane for the past two years. The company has also publicly said it wants to build its own electric planes for short-haul routes.