“ZeroAvia is a leader in zero-emission aviation, focused on hydrogen-electric aviation solutions to address a variety of markets, initially targeting 500-mile range in 10–20 seat aircraft used for commercial passenger transport, cargo, agriculture, and more. Based in the UK and USA, ZeroAvia has already secured experimental certificates for its two prototype aircraft from the CAA and FAA, passed significant flight test milestones, and is on track for commercial operations in 2024. The company’s expanding UK operations are supported by grants from UK’s Aerospace Technology Institute and Innovate UK, and ZeroAvia is part of the UK Government’s Jet Zero Council.” from https://www.zeroavia.com/about-us.
“As the company moves closer to commercialization of its hydrogen-electric technology, ZeroAvia has secured a new raise of $35 million to help develop its 2–5MW zero-emission powertrain system for regional aviation. As announced today, United Airlines has invested in ZeroAvia through this round, and our agreement with United anticipates an order for 50 ZA2000-RJ engines, with an option for 50 more. United joins an already announced new investor, Alaska Air Group, in this round, alongside existing investors Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund, AP Ventures, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Horizons Ventures, Summa Equity, and Shell Ventures. This brings the company’s total investment to date up to $115 million.” from https://www.zeroavia.com/united-airlines.
This green aviation example from Aviation Week describes how “proponents of hydrogen-electric propulsion are pushing deeper into short-haul air transportation with deals that could see the conversion of large turboprops and regional jets and the first zero-emissions commercial passenger flights with smaller aircraft as soon as 2024.”
The article goes on to report that “Startup ZeroAvia has announced an agreement with Alaska Air Group to develop a hydrogen-electric powertrain for the 76-seat De Havilland Canada Dash 8-400. Another with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries’ RJ Aviation (MHIRJ) division will evaluate conversion of the Bombardier-built CRJ regional jet family.”
ZeroAvia CEO Val Miftakhov is quoted saying “We believe that in the future almost every aircraft in the world will be powered by hydrogen-electric engines, simply because it is the most viable and scalable method for eliminating carbon and also to cut other harmful emissions from the aviation sector.”
Aviation is reported to be responsible for up to 2% of all human-generated CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. Reducing emissions from regional aircraft is especially important because they spend more of their flight time during short legs in less-efficient ascending power. As part of the EU’s Horizon 2020 program, the engineering consulting firm ADSE has published “Aircraft Requirements for Sustainable Regional Aviation’ in collaboration with Embraer and the University of Stuttgart.
In this recent news post from ADSE the authors wrote: “The full report presents the top-level requirements for a hybrid-electric regional aircraft for up to 50 passengers. It addresses environment, market, operations, performance and regulations. In addition, different reference missions are defined to check whether these requirements are fulfilled. It paves the runway towards more sustainable aviation within two decades.”
Read more and download the report directly from ADSE HERE.
This Our World In Data article on Climate Change and Flying reports that global aviation, before the pandemic, was responsible for only 2.5% of CO2 emissions.
At first appearance that seems like a small number that may not justify all the investments in new technologies, or in reduction of travel, to have much of an impact in arresting climate change. But the challenge with decarbonizing the global economy is that most sources of GHG by industry are in the single digits!
So we have to make progress in each and every sector; no small change is too small as they will all add up.
According to Our World in Data, before the pandemic global aviation was responsible for about 2.5% of all CO2 emissions, or nearly 1 billion tonnes per year. This green news from Simply Flying, the world’s largest aviation news website, profiles “A new concept widebody aircraft has been unveiled by an Alabama startup. SE Aeronautics (the SE standing for Super Efficient) have reworked the entire concept of an airliner, and revealed an innovative tri-wing aircraft that they say will have an 80% lower carbon footprint than similar traditional planes.” Read more about this three-wing two-engine monocogue composite design at https://simpleflying.com/next-generation-widebody-low-emissions/amp/. (Photo image credit from SE Aeronautics.)