In July, British “axial flow” electric motor start-up YASA was acquired by Mercedes-Benz for an undisclosed amount. YASA’s electric motors have gained considerable interest in the electric vehicle industry due to their efficiency, high power density, small size and low weight.
Indeed, Rolls-Royce, best known in aviation for its jet engines, used YASA engines in its all-electric “Spirit of Innovation” aircraft which recently completed a 15-minute test flight.
But it emerged today that there was, to say the least, more to the case than it appears.
It turns out that a new company, Evolito, was formed out of YASA before its acquisition by Mercedes Benz, taking with it an electric motor that it describes as ultra-efficient, light and the most suitable for the aerospace industry.
The prospect now is that Evolito will pick up in the aerospace world where YASA left off in the automotive world. The main investors in Evolito are Waypoint Capital and Oxford Science Enterprises (OSE).
The implication is that because YASA’s technology has been proven in high volume production in the automotive industry, Evolito could have particular advantages in aerospace.
Evolito claims that its engines are “high performance, lightweight axial flow motors” and that its power electronics are “smaller, lighter and more rugged than any competing technology” with wide potential applications in takeoff and liner. electric vertical landings (eVTOL), fixed wing and distributed electric propulsion applications such as urban air mobility (UAM).
Gareth Morris, Managing Director of Evolito, said: “Electrification in the aerospace industry is about ten years behind that in the automotive industry, but the market potential is enormous. Electric vertical take-off and landing planes, electric helicopters, fixed wings and urban air mobility aircraft require high power density and low weight electric powertrains with inherently high safety factors – a combination of attributes unique to our axial flow electric motor and power electronics. By leveraging YASA’s unique intellectual property in the aerospace market, Evolito will accelerate the commercialization of electric flight and transform mobility as we know it.
Many of these claims appear to be true. After personally touring the YASA factory and explaining in detail the benefits of its engine “topology”, I would find it very difficult to dispute the claims made about it. It is this technology that Evolito is now advancing in the aerospace industry, and it looks like it will be a very bright future.
Cyrus Jilla, Partner and Director of the Board of Directors of Waypoint Capital, said: “At Waypoint, one of our thematic interests is energy transition and sustainability, including electrification. We seek to invest in companies with unique disruptive technology led by exceptional teams. Evolito is a perfect fit for us and we look forward to supporting the team in developing their revolutionary electrification solutions for the aerospace market, making emission-free flight a reality. “
Alexis Zervoglos, Senior Partner, OSE added: “The electrification of flights is one of the most exciting market opportunities of our time. Realizing this potential will require innovative new technology and the ability to scale to meet rapidly emerging demand. OSE is delighted to support Evolito in its mission to accelerate the adoption of electric flight.
The market for electric drive solutions for urban applications is expected to reach $ 90 billion and 160,000 vehicles by 2050, according to some industry experts.
(Just nobody tells them about Aviato, okay?)