13 September 2021
Old Buckenham Airfield is delighted to be able to announce that it is now home to the UK’s first electric aircraft charging point, installed in time for the Old Buckenham Airshow. It’s also the first aircraft charging point in Europe to be powered entirely from Solar energy.
The unit, housed in a cutting edge solar-panel-roofed hangar, comes courtesy of NUNCATS who are developing a remarkable solar-powered aircraft system for developing countries. The project has seen the successful construction of a Zenith CH 750 ‘Skyjeep’ powered entirely from an electric motor; the aim being that charging points like Old Buckenham’s will allow distant communities to be serviced by a small landing strip and solar hangar. The aircraft, able to taxy under its own power, will soon enter into a sequence of maiden flights, all from Old Buckenham.
The project has recently been the subject of an official visit by Aviation Minister Robert Courts who was able to see the aircraft run and be charged during the Old Buckenham Airshow.
The charging point, whilst erected predominantly for NUNCATS’ project, will also be equipped to charge the Pipistrel Electro range of aircraft; providing a start to their network of electric charging points.
Matt Wilkins; Old Buckenham’s CAA Accountable Aerodrome Manager said: “We’re delighted that, thanks to being the home of NUNCAT’s, Old Buckenham will enter it’s 80th year by being firmly at the front of Aviation’s adoption of carbon neutral technologies, we’re looking forward to the next important milestone; the aircraft’s first flight”
Tim Bridge; NUNCATS founder: “Thanks to the support of Old Buckenham’s owners and management we're now testing our first electric aircraft with power from its own solar microgrid. Over the coming months we look forward to demonstrating what impact off-grid electric light aircraft can have for rural communities”
For further information, quotes and photographs please contact Matt Wilkins on 01953 860 806, option 4 or email@example.com
Old Buckenham Airfield is a former WWII United States Army Air Force base and was home to the 453rd Bombardment Group of the 8th Air Force which operated B-24 Liberator bombers between
1943 and the end of WWII. Hollywood Actor Jimmy Stewart was the original Operations Officer and fellow actor Walter Matthau served here.
Today the airfield is one of a handful of CAA Licensed Aerodromes in East Anglia and accepts flights from Europe and the Channel Islands on three runways, backed by a comprehensive infrastructure.
The modern day airfield is also home to two Museums; the 453rd Bombardment Group Museum opened in 2015 which houses the largest collection of 453rd memorabilia in existence. 2017 saw the opening of the 8th Air Force Heritage Gallery. In addition over a dozen companies operate from Old Buckenham including a highly regarded Flying School, Flight Simulator Centre, Aircraft Engineering, Paint and Interiors as well as a host of other engineering concerns.
The Old Buckenham Airshow, held annually at the airfield, is the largest Airshow in Norfolk and Suffolk. The only Airshow to make the list of Country Life’s 100 events for the “Greatest Summer Ever”; further accolades came with the 2016 EDP Hoseasons Tourism Awards Title of “Family Event of the Year”.