News articles

Skip to content

UK first as electric aircraft helps turn Moray Flying Club green

RAF Lossiemouth’s Moray Flying Club has begun flying a new electric aircraft, putting it on track to become the UK’s first recreational flying club to offer direct carbon emission-free initial pilot training.

The new Pipistrel Velis Electro aircraft - callsign ‘MORAY 01 ELECTRIC’ - took to the skies on Sunday 24 March 2024 for its first training flight. 

Moray Flying Club (MFC) recently leased the aircraft from electric-flying specialists NEBOair, as part of a drive to reduce the environmental and noise impact of their flying. The aircraft is powered by electricity from the grid, like an electric car.

The innovation will mean that students can reach their first solo flight without direct carbon emissions.

Other green-minded moves have enabled MFC to further cut emissions, with the use of a NEBOair-supplied Virtual Reality simulator cutting down on the overall number of flying hours needed to achieve a full private pilot’s licence.

The Club has also replaced two older aircraft with Rotax-engine aircraft that use lower-lead fuel and are much quieter.

MFC estimate that the new innovations will slash their emissions by around 30%, which they say is just the start.

“As the RAF seeks to achieve Net Zero by 2040, ahead of the UK’s 2050 target, our recreational flying clubs need to play their part and so we’re delighted that our electric aircraft has taken to the skies.

This is a momentous occasion for us as a club and represents a big leap forward into a new world of sustainable aviation, helping Moray Flying Club’s students learn to fly in a cleaner, greener way.

While these innovations are already helping our Club significantly reduce its environmental and noise impact, cutting our direct emissions is only the first step. We hope that by sharing our experience with other military and civilian flying clubs we can help drive the recreational flying sector towards Net Zero.”

Squadron Leader David Taudevin
Officer-in-charge, Moray Flying Club