Educational by Chapter of the Powered Paragliding Bible

I: First Flight

01 Training Process

02 Gearing Up

03 Handling the Wing

04 Prep For 1st Flight

05 The Flight

06 Flying With Wheels 

II: Spreading Wings

07 Weather Basics

08 The Law

09 Airspace   

10 Flying Anywhere

11 Controlled Airports

12 Setup & Mx

13 Flying Cross Country

14 Flying With Others

III: Mastery

15 Adv Ground Handling

16 Precision Flying

17 Challenging Sites

18 Advanced Maneuvers

19 Risk Management

20 Competition

21 Free Flight Transition

IV: Theory

22 Aerodynamics

23 Motor & Propeller

24 Weather & Wind

25 Roots: Our History

V: Choosing Gear

26 The Wing

27 The Motor Unit

28 Accessories

29 Home Building

VI: Getting the Most

30 Other Uses

31 Traveling With Gear

32 Photography

--- Not in book ---

33 Organizing Fly-Ins

34 Places To Fly

35 Preserving the Sport

36 Tandem

Electric Paramotors

2010 Mar  6 The latest happenings in the world of Electrics

It's frustrating that so little seems to be happening on the electric front in some ways but, at the same time, smaller efforts seem to be reaping rewards. Lately, I've seen three new electrics come on the scene including two drive trains that for sale. These will wind up on but I thought them newsworthy for FootFlyer, too. Yuneec is still actively working on their goodies and will hopefully make their target of having something commercially available. Fresh Breeze has a commercial unit that, unfortunately, hasn't arrived on U.S. shores yet.

While I'm not the early adopter type, I can't wait to see those guys start flying electrics. It won't likely be their primary motor, and it won't be cheap, so the first ones will go to the well heeled. My hat's off to those folks because, if it weren't for them, the rest of would have to wait a lot longer for the coolest innovations.

ParaWatt by Pierre Renault, France

These guys have been quietly building an electric machine for the past four years--work that has paid off by creating a salable drive train that can be used by other makers. After seeing pictures, I inquired with the usual questions and the lead developer, Pierre, was most helpful. Computer translators are remarkable, making up for my utter lack of foreign language skills and letting us communicate reasonably well.

ParaWatt's story involves four "impassioned technicians" who have worked on the electric paramotor for more than 4 years, testing many existing motors, and finding nothing that approached what they wanted from a quality point of view of, reliability and safety. So they created one. The one in these pictures is their fifth prototype.

Here are the specifics, provided verbatim, from Pierre using a computer French-to-English Translator.

  • The price of the engine is of 1794 and the price of the controller is of 699 . We do not propose complete paramoteurs, but only the engine intended for manufacturers of paramotor or light ULM.
  • The price of battery 13S is approximately 1600 at Kokam in Korea.
  • The maximum trust is of 55 kgF with a propeller of 130 cm. Note: I asked about a thrust/duration curve but they haven't done that kind of testing yet. No worries, neither has anyone else.
  • The weight of our prototype is 31 kg, but it is a laboratory. I think that it is possible to make less than 30 kg ready for the use.
  • We have 14 kg of batteries.
  • Battery is a LiPo
  • Special Chargeur/eq
  • Special Chargeur/equilibror LiPo regulated over 4 hours charge.

The four team members are Pierre Renault, Louis Fourdan, Patrick Seme, Jean-Pierre Hochart. More pictures are available here.

FlyTec E-Drive

They're not allowed to fly paramotors in Switzerland. And now that I've been there, it's almost (not quite, but almost) understandable. A noisy motor would reverberate through any valley it flew in and, given that most of the country lives in valleys, that's a lot of area. So they're trying to get electric propulsion exempted and this looks like a good start. No info on sales or pricing yet.

Here's more from their website.

Electric Trikebuggy

I got a bunch of letters about this onea home-grown wheeled PPG by Pierre Beney. It's built with off-the-shelf Radio Control model motors. Looking at the video doesn't say much about it beyond the search for improvements. It doesn't appear to have much of a climb rate but hey, it's hefting the extra weight and drag of a cart so that's not so surprising. One great aspect of rolling for takeoff is letting the wheels do the lifting. Batteries are heavy. Hopefully we can more details on this down the road.


The Swiss made FlyTec e-Drive, offered for trikes, powered hang gliders and paramotors. More information here.

© 2016 Jeff Goin & Tim Kaiser   Remember: If there's air there, it should be flown in!