BETA powers up on Massachusetts fast charger en route to Florida


BETA Technologies has made an inaugural charge on Massachusetts’ first-ever public access electric aircraft and vehicle charging station.

The firm’s CTOL aircraft touched down on Friday on its way to Florida where it will be delivered to the US Air Force. The fast charger was installed over the summer in partnership with local FBO Shoreline Aviation, electric firm Eversource and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation’s Aeronautics Division (MassDOT Aeronautics). 

The BETA-designed charging stations are multimodal and interoperable, providing the capability to power electric ground and air vehicles. The installation includes two Level 3 fast-chargers with one on either side of the airfield fence, giving easy access to both aircraft and ground vehicles. There is also a Level 2 charger, for use only by public ground vehicles.

Blain Newton, BETA’s COO said: “It’s exciting to be able to fly our all-electric aircraft into Marshfield Municipal Airport on our way down the east coast, and even more exciting to be able to charge it at the State’s very first electric aircraft charger. As we look to make this new technology a widespread reality, investment in infrastructure and innovation-minded partners will be critical. We’re honored to have the support of partners like Shoreline, the Massachusetts DOT, and Eversource, who are helping to drive that mission forward for their state and beyond.”

The first charge powered up the aircraft as it arrived in from BETA’s flight test centre in Plattsburgh, New York, by way of Syracuse. Keith Douglass, president and CEO of Shoreline, said: “This charging infrastructure positions Shoreline and Marshfield Municipal Airport to support the electric vehicles of today and tomorrow. Pilots of electric aircraft, as well as drivers of electric vehicles, now have a one-stop location for charging their batteries. And for pilots, it’s the only public charger in the Bay State.”


Where it all began

The idea of installing the charging system began as a conversation between former Shoreline employee Geoff Douglass and BETA. Originally, he says, urban applications such as parking garages were seen as appropriate for eVTOLs. He voiced the idea of employing general aviation airports for the job—that’s when the light clicked to use Marshfield as a charging base in Massachusetts. 

But the power capacity just was not there until Eversource installed the additional electric infrastructure necessary. Vice president for Energy Efficiency and Electric Mobility, Tilak Subrahmanian said: “Innovative projects like Shoreline Aviation’s charger installation are exciting to be a part of as we look to the future of electric transportation and our role in connecting customers, businesses, communities and other stakeholders with EV chargers.”