Lightweight generators for airborne applications have received a lot of attention lately as the only feasible way to extend the range/duration of electrically-propelled air vehicles. By integrating the LaunchPoint Dual Halbach Array technology into a small reciprocating engine, LaunchPoint Technologies has developed a high specific power range-extender genset for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.*
The genset weighs approximately 6kg and produces 6kW. It can be gasoline-fueled or converted to heavy fuel by Greg Stevens Engineering (GSE), a collaborating company. The alternator and electronics have a chain efficiency of greater than 93% at operating conditions, and the integrated alternator can act as a starter motor for the engine as well. The system is still undergoing testing, but will be available for purchase soon.
*The genset was developed by LaunchPoint engineers under subcontract T13-6200-LAU from the National Institute of Aerospace as part NASA Prime contract NNL08AA00B.