Simon Willison’s Weblog


4 items tagged “ekranoplans”


The benefit of ground effects are:—10-20% range extension (agreed, between 50% and 100% wingspan, which is where seagliders fly, the aerodynamic benefit of ground effect is reduced compared to near surface flight)—Drastic reduction in reserve fuel. This is a key limitation of electric aircraft because they need to sustain powered flight to another airport in the event of an emergency. We can always land on the water, therefore, we can count all of our batteries towards “mission useable” [...] Very difficult to distribute propulsion with IC engines or mechanical linkages. Electric propulsion technology unlocks the blown wing, which unlocks the use of hydrofoils, which unlocks wave tolerance and therefore operations of WIGs, which unlocks longer range of electric flight. It all works together.

Billy Thalheimer, founder of REGENT # 24th May 2023, 2:58 am

REGENT: Coastal Travel. 100% Electric (via) As a long-time fan of ekranoplans this is very exciting to me: the REGENT Seaglider is a fully electric passenger carrying wing-in-ground-effect vehicle designed to serve coastal routes, operating at half the cost of an aircraft (and 1/10th the cost of a helicopter) and using hydrofoils to resolve previous problems with ekranoplans and wave tolerance. They’re a YC company and the founder has been answering questions on Hacker News today. They’ve pre-sold 467 vehicles already and expect them to start entering service in various locations around the world “mid-decade”. # 24th May 2023, 2:17 am


James May’s Big Ideas: Come Fly with Me (via) The BBC made an hour-long documentary on Ekranoplans! It’s available for the next 21 days on the iPlayer (UK residents only). # 28th September 2008, 11:07 pm


Ekranoplan! Crazy awesome Soviet “ground effect” vehicle, visible in dry dock on Google Maps. # 3rd April 2007, 10:04 am