Could gas-powered planes be a thing of the past? Could gas-powered planes be a thing of the past? Could gas-powered planes be a thing of the past? (Photo: Olena Yakobchuk / Shutterstock)

Could gas-powered planes be a thing of the past?

Company announces they're working on an electric-powered aircraft, reducing pollution and fuel costs.

In recent years, electric cars have become more mainstream. According to Bloomberg, almost 80 percent of the global auto market is pushing toward a phase-out of petroleum cars and an adoption of electric vehicles. Say so long to the gas station, and hello to that outlet in your garage.

So what's next? What if we told you that electric airplanes are on the horizon. A company called Israel Aerospace Industry (IAI), headquartered near Tel Aviv, recently announced that it has started working on them.

The demand for electrically powered aircraft is projected to reach hundreds of planes per year within the next decade. The transition from gas to electric propulsion is expected to save millions of dollars in fuel and maintenance costs. Not to mention, the environmental benefits include significant reduction of air pollution and noise levels. (When the Toyota Prius first debuted, people actually complained that they couldn't hear the car running.)

"The aviation world is about to enter a new era of electric propulsion," said IAI's Moshe Medina. "Electric airplanes are greener, quieter, reliable and more economical. We are nearing the completion of the characterization and conceptual design phase and will focus on the areas in which we see the strongest business potential."

To help further save fuel costs, the company has also invented a a "taxibot" that tows planes from the passenger gate to the runway, so the planes needn't run their engines.

And what else are they working on? Just a little project that involves flying cars in Tel Aviv. We're calling it the Jetsons of Jaffa.


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