more efficient







In cooperation with NASA and ESAero, Joby Aviation is advancing the state of the art of general aviation aircraft design through electric propulsion.

The Leading Edge Asynchronous Propellers Technology (LEAPTech) program envisions signficant improvements in efficiency (five times less eneregy usage), ride quality, and gust sensitivity by more than doubling the wing loading, all while maintaining the same stall and field length performance of conventional gas-powered aircraft. This is possible without resorting to structurally complex high-lift systems by using a series of small electric motors and propellers to increase the velocity of the air around the wing.

The use of electric motors, combined with slow-turning propellers, results in a drastically reduced noise signature.

The first phase of this project comprised full-scale ground tests achieved by mounting a heavily-instrumented full-scale LEAPTech wing above a semi truck and driving it at takeoff speeds (up to 73 mph) on a runway at NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center. Joby Aviation collaborated with NASA in the conceptual design of the wing, and performed detailed design and manufacture of the electric motors, propellers, carbon fiber wing, and ground test apparatus.

After conclusion of the LEAPTech truck tests, the wing and motors will be used as NASA's Hybrid-Electric Integrated Systems Testbed (HEIST). Under the SCEPTOR (Scalable Convergent Electric Propulsion Technology Operations Research) program, Joby Aviation and NASA are designing a new wing, motors, and propellers to fit on a modified Tecnam P2006T aircraft, with flight tests scheduled to begin in 2018.

Download the technical paper


Joby has performed extensive aeropropulsive CFD analysis to determine the propeller and wing design that will achieve the greatest benefit from the advantages of electric propulsion. This animation shows the result of one of these simulations at landing conditions.

LEAPTech at NASA Armstrong, June 2015 (NASA photo)

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Cruise speed200 mph200 mph
Cruise altitude8,000 ft8,000 ft
Stall speed57 knots58 knots
Takeoff/landing CLmax5.04.0
Field length2,000 ft2,000 ft
Weights and Dimensions
Seating capacity44
Wingspan31 ft32 ft
Wing area55 ft267 ft2
Aspect ratio17.515.0
Gross weight3,000 lb3,000 lb
Wing loading55 lb/ft245 lb/ft2