Current Projects

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Electric Airplane

Electric Airplane

After creating the first parallel drive hybrid aircraft in the world, Embry-Riddle is once again pushing the limits of aviation by creating a fully electric airplane. A Diamond HK-36 aircraft is being modified to operate completely under electric propulsion. Battery systems, mission profiles, and aerodynamics are being optimized to maximize safety and flight time. This project is a gateway to the future of aviation, where emission and noise control are two of the most pertinent issues.



Embry-Riddle and the Daytona International Airport have been awarded a Certificate of Authorization for the operation of an autonomous Octocopter. The Octocopter will be able to autonomously fly through a field while monitoring the health of various crops. Early detection of infected crops will allow more effective farming that will result in savings of time and money. The Octocopter is currently being flight tested to demonstrate its safety features.

NASA Airspace Operations Challenge


This project consists of instrumenting a Cessna 182 to compete in NASA’s UAS Centennial challenge, scheduled for September. The challenge consists of flying autonomously through a series of predefined waypoints while using ADS-B data to avoid other airplanes flying nearby. The aircraft operates as a surrogate UAV, with a safety pilot onboard. The aircraft can transition between normal and autonomous operations with the flip of a switch. The outcome of this challenge is to further advance the technologies necessary for the integration of unmanned aircraft into the National Airspace System. The aircraft is being flight tested to optimize mission performance.

The Cessna 182 is undergoing a re-organization of all the on-board electronics as well as of its ground station. The current capabilities of the aircraft are being enhanced to meet industry standards of communication and interchangeability.

Pulse Detonation Engine for Driveshaft Applications


As a privately funded, publicly traded company, TTE currently holds the exclusive license for innovative clean air turbine technology. The Gas Turbine Laboratory is responsible for assembly, testing, and evaluation of the next generation prototypes.