Technology Maturity Roadmaps of Power System Components for eVTOL Aircraft

Altouq, Shadan and Fong, Chung M. and Norman, Patrick J. and Burt, Graeme (2022) Technology Maturity Roadmaps of Power System Components for eVTOL Aircraft. Preprint / Working Paper. University of Strathclyde, Glasgow. (Unpublished)

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The viability of aerial taxi missions is highly dependent on the mass and reliability of the electrical power system to supply uninterrupted power to the propulsion [1–3]. Yet, the electrical power system is limited by the low maturity, in terms of power and energy density, of the current available critical technologies. Therefore, the integration of the technologies into a single power and propulsion system requires significant attention to provide a viable solution capable of supporting the mission requirements. Following from this, there is a clear need for a consolidated capture and project of relevant electrical technology capability and availability in order to develop effective solutions. This white paper presents a summary and discussion of 10-year roadmaps for key electrical technologies required for electrical vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft design. The technologies covered are critical to the power system design and include energy storage, power electronics, power machines, and protection devices. Power-to-weight and energy-to-weight ratios have been obtained from public domain sources on existing technologies, market projections, and projection targets from advisory bodies in order to establish technology progression trendlines. These can subsequently be used to influence electrical power and propulsion system design choices and strategies for future platforms.