Cheops reveals a rugby ball-shaped exoplanet

Artist impression of planet WASP-103b and its host star

ESA’s exoplanet mission Cheops has revealed that an exoplanet orbiting its host star within a day has a deformed shape more like that of a rugby ball than a sphere. This is the first time that the deformation of an exoplanet has been detected, offering new insights into the internal structure of these star-hugging planets.

Source: European Space Agency

Consortium Flies Hybrid-Electric Airplane Prototypes

The program displayed the Pipistrel Panthera flown in October to demonstrate the prototype hybrid-electric powerplant in a light single-engine airplane.Joze Kovacic-JUICE

Under the guidance of Pipistrel’s Vertical Solutions, a consortium of eight partners in the European Union have concluded a project designed to advance alternative propulsion and regional air transport.

Its name speaks literally to what the project has achieved: MAHEPA (Modular Approach to Hybrid-Electric Propulsion Architecture) brought together DLR-German Aerospace Center, H2Fly GmbH, Compact Dynamics GmbH, Politecnico di Milano, TU Delft, and researchers from University of Ulm and University of Maribor under the umbrella Horizon Europe.

The goal? To address the drive towards zero emissions in transportation sectors, including regional and general aviation.

Together, the team flew two four-seat aircraft carrying the prototype power systems:

  • A Pipistrel Panthera with a single fuselage, traditionally mounted propeller, and retractable gear
  • A H2Fly Hy4 with a dual fuselage and center-mounted propeller and system

The MAHEPA group delivered the report at a meeting at the Maribor Edvard Rusjan Airport in Slovenia, where the consortium also had its Pipistrel Panthera demonstrator on display.

More info: flyingmag.com

Floating through the Space Station in 360

ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet takes you on a brief tour of the International Space Station like no other. Filmed with a 360 camera, he floats from Node-3 to Europe’s Columbus laboratory.

Immerse yourself in this brief but unique fly through humankind’s orbital outpost.

Follow Thomas: https://blogs.esa.int/exploration/it/category/astronauts/thomas-pesquet/

Access the other Space Station 360 videos

Source: European Space Agency

Joby Aviation Goes Public

By Meg Scarbrough – August 11, 2021

Joby plans to launch its all-electric aircraft in 2024. .Joby Aviation

Air taxi startup Joby Aviation has officially become the first U.S.-based eVTOL company to be publicly traded.

Founder and CEO JoeBen Bevirt was at the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday to ring the bell, signaling a start of the day’s trading and the company’s launch into the stock market.

“Aviation connects the world in critically important ways but today it does that at the expense of our planet,” Bevirt said Wednesday morning. “By taking Joby public, we have the opportunity to drive a renaissance in aviation, making emissions-free flight a part of everyday life. This is our generation’s moonshot moment, and at Joby we’re proud to be leaning in.”

Joby is now listed as “JOBY” and “JOBY WS.”

This Santa Cruz, California-based company, which launched in 2009, joins the ranks of China-based competitor EHang in the quest to find solutions toward zero-emission aviation. Competitors Lilium and Archer have also announced their own plans to go public in the future.

Wednesday’s listing was made possible through a reverse merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), Reinvent Technology Partners (RTP). The deal is valued at $6.6 billion.

Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn co-founder and co-lead director of RTP, said Wednesday, “We believe Joby is ‘Tesla meets Uber in the air’ and the clear leader in the eVTOL and aerial ridesharing space. We believe Joby is well-positioned with capital to be the first company to certification and commercialization. Closing this business combination accelerates Joby’s roadmap, and we look forward to supporting JoeBen and Joby’s world-class team in executing on their vision.”

Source: flyingmag.com

Tecnam Introduces Two New Model Updates at EAA AirVenture

The latest Tecnam P2010TDI utilizes a 170-hp Continental powerplant that burns Jet-A or diesel. Courtesy Tecnam

In May 2020, Tecnam announced the pending certification of the update to the P2010 series, the P2010TDI. With a 170-hp Continental CD-170 engine up front, the version offers an option for pilots who want the ability to operate on diesel or Jet-A. At EAA AirVenture 2021, the company announced the availability of the four-seat, metal-and-carbon-fiber composite single. The 215-hp original P2010 runs on avgas and remains available, as well as the 180-hp powerplant that uses unleaded automotive fuel. Up front, the P2010 hosts a Garmin G1000 NXi integrated flight deck and a GFC 700 autopilot.

The diesel version burns an average of 5.2 gph according to the company, with a 1,000-nm range (with 63 gallons of usable fuel on board), at about 130 ktas. Continental has delivered more than 6,000 of the 170 hp engine, with more than 1.7 million hours logged in service.

The P92 Echo MkII features an improved useful load from previous versions. Courtesy Tecnam

Tecnam also announced the availability of its latest update to the P92 Echo, the MkII, with an increased useful load of 610 pounds in the new version—which was blessed under EASA regulations last fall.

The company featured a much-expanded presence at AirVenture, with a 12,000-sq-ft display area and new members of the team to promote sales and customer service in the US. Industry veteran David Copeland has been named Director of Sales, and Ben Coleman is the new chief operating officer.

Source: flyingmag.com

Air France, Boeing 787

The 787 is the first Boeing aircraft to result from an international cooperative effort. Different parts of the aircraft were manufactured in different places around the world. 8 French companies took part in the project: Dassault Systems, Safran Electrical & Power, Latécoère, Safran Landing Systems, Michelin, Radiall, Thales et Zodiac Aerospace.

The Boeing 787-9, also known as the Dreamliner, is the latest addition to the Boeing range. With Air France, you can enjoy exceptional comfort, WiFi connection and a range of innovative features on flights departing from Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport to 10 destinations around the world.

Perseverance Mars Rover’s Mastcam-Z View of ‘Van Zyl Overlook’ (360 video + audio)

NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover used its Mastcam-Z imaging system to capture this 360-degree panorama of “Van Zyl Overlook,” where the rover was parked as the Ingenuity helicopter performed its first flights. The 2.4 billion-pixel panorama is made up of 992 individual images stitched together. The images were taken between April 15 and 26, 2021, or the 53rd and 64th Martian days, or sols, of the mission.

The image of the rover in this panorama was taken on an earlier date, March 20, 2021, the 31st sol of the mission. It was added to give a better impression of scale and perspective from the rover’s point of view. Imaging coverage of the sky has also been digitally smoothed and expanded based on the actual sky color observed as the panorama was being acquired on Mars. A few small patches of near-field sand had been covered by parts of Perseverance when the right-eye Mastcam-Z images were taken; those gaps were filled with images of the same sandy patches taken by the Mastcam-Z left-eye camera at the same time, or from the earlier Navcam images.

The audio recording was made on Feb. 22, 2021.

Rover background sounds have been removed. Please note: Not all browsers support viewing 360 videos. YouTube supports their playback on computers using Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Opera browsers. For the best experience on a mobile device, play this video in the YouTube app. Explore the 2-D interactive panorama at https://go.nasa.gov/3zek1IP

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASU/MSSS

Mars Perseverance Rover acquired these images on mars surface |6&7 june 2021|Sol 105|Mastcam-Z|Daily

Mars Perseverance Rover acquired these images on mars surface |6&7 june 2021.

Perseverance Sol 105: Right Mastcam-Z Cameraacquired these images using its Right Mastcam-Z camera. Mastcam-Z is a pair of cameras located high on the rover’s mast.

These images was acquired on Jun. 6,&7 2021 (Sol 105) at the local mean solar time of 15:44:47.