Pipistrel was invided to attend the Electric Aircraft Symposium 2008 by CAFE's President Mr Brien Seeley. Ivo Boscarol and Tine Tomazic decided not only to present the Taurus Electro, although it is the first and only 2-seat electric aircraft flying, but also to include the complete Pipistrel's philosophy and means of energy preservation in the presentation. Based on this fact, team Pipistrel was alotted the longest speech of the event.
Although preparations for the event started weeks before the actual departure to San Francisco, Ivo and Tine started to feel anxious on the day of arrival to sunny California. We were thrilled to see the way energy preservation philosophy is being introduced into every day lives of almost everyone in San Fransicso. Water preserving toilets, electronic ticketing, hotel lights that only activate through movement sentors these were just the beginning! Ivo, as the first owner of the hybrid Toyota Prius car in Slovenia, was completely taken aback seeing how many Prius drive on the roads of San Francisco. We are positive that at least 5-10 out of a 100 cars are already hybrids!
The second day of the travel was spent fighing with the jet-lag and sightseeing around the City. Those who have been to San Francisco will agree that this is a city that breathes. One does not have a sensation of the streets being crowded, there is absolutly no feeling of anxiety. Quite the opposite! Many parks, steep streets with cable cars, squares and super-fast-pedestrian-friendly traffic lights make San Francisco a joy for tourists even on foot. We visited the Golden Gate, took a boat trip around the harbour and the Alcatraz Island, went for a cable-car ride on Mason Street, checked out the Acquarium, enjoyed the Japanese gardens and more and more. Pictures will do the talking here...
Day three of the stay, the 26 April, 2008, was the day of the Electric Aircraft Symposium. Held at the Westin hotel near San Francisco International Airport, the venue provided for an exclusive atmosphere. An elite group of people, experts from the field of energy/environmental preservation and aviation entusiats all involved in creating the future of flight - the Electric way. A complete list of presentations given on the Symposium can be found on the CAFE website (click here), but here is Ivo's and Tine's presentation with subtitles for everyone who did not attend the event:
We have received many compliments during and after the Electric Aircraft Symposium, all extremely positive and supportive towards our company vision, the Taurus Electro and our presentation. Mark Moore from NASA Langley Research Centre, also a speaker at the conference, wrote to us:
"I would like to thank you again for attending the Electric Aircraft Symposium, and taking the time to travel so far. Your presentation was simply the best in the entire meeting, and completely enjoyed by everyone. I am envious of the great facility you have, and the forward thinking your company demonstrates.
I definitely want to stay in touch with you as new developments occur in this research area. I am convinced that as exciting opportunities present themselves, Pipistrel will be at the forefront of the most promising small aircraft possibilities. I wish such companies existed here in the United States, as you make me fearful for the future of small U.S. aircraft manufacturers."
After the event it was time to head for home. Full of impressions and new ideas for future project, team Pipistrel promises not to let you down!
At this point we would like to thank Brein Seeley and the complete CAFE Foundation for inviting us and organising such a splendid event, Mark Moore for all his kind words and support, Jack Norris for taking his time and explaining his innovative way of designing propellers, Richard D Jones of Boing for giving us valuable insight in super-efficient solar cells, and all the rest who have contributed in any way, before, during or after this event. Thank you all very much!