A top speed of almost 250 knots in a microlight? Yes, that’s the performance claim being made by Italian company Risen for its newest aircraft, the 915iS SuperVeloce.
Performance charts issued by the company show the SuperVeloce reaching 212kt max continuous horizontal speed at 9,000ft, rising to almost 250kt at 20,000ft.
As the name suggests, the two-seat 600kg microlight is powered by the latest 141hp Rotax 915iS which gives the low drag Risen astonishing performance.
But it wasn’t just a case of bolting in the more powerful fuel-injected turbocharged Rotax engine. The wings have been clipped from 9.0 metres (29.5ft) to 8.15m (26.9ft) and the vee-tail also shortened.
“We don’t believe you can just install a 40% more powerful engine in the same airframe,” said Albert Porto, who company Porto Aviation Group, produces the Risen.
“Either your 100hp powered version is underpowered, or the 141hp 915iS will be overpowered. This is just physics. Let’s not forget, the needed additional hp needed is cubic vs drag.
“Risen has the lowest drag ratio in the industry, so adding 40% more power is a lot for the already fast aircraft,” continued Albert.
“Remember that the 115hp Risen 914T outperforms any of the other already flying low wing ULs [Ultralights] with the much stronger 915iS.”
Porto points out that the new LTF-UL2019 certification standard for 600kg microlights no longer limits the stall speed to 65km/h, but a significant higher +80km/h, which is what allowed him to make the changes to the airframe.
Although the aircraft was due to be revealed this month at the cancelled AERO Friedrichshafen event, the word has spread and Porto says the first 12 months’ production has already sold out.
The aircraft will make its public debut at an Italian event next weekend, the VFR & FUN at Pavullo on 9 to 11 July 2021.