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E-Mobility

Airbus, Rolls-Royce and Siemens Teamed up to Develop Hybrid-Electric Plane

By Editorial Team on November 29, 2017

Airbus, Rolls Royce and Siemens joined forces to develop a hybrid-electric aircraft. This collaboration brings together some of the best world’s experts in electrical and propulsion technologies.

With the E-Fan X demonstrator program, the three companies intend to explore the challenges of high-power propulsion systems, such as thermal effects, electric thrust management, altitude and dynamic effects on electric systems and electromagnetic compatibility issues. The program will also enables the establishment of requirements for future certification of electrically powered aircraft and at the same time serves as a training for a new generation of designers and engineers to bring hybrid-electric commercial aircraft to life.

“The E-Fan X is an important next step in our goal of making electric flight a reality in the foreseeable future. The lessons we learned from a long history of electric flight demonstrators, starting with the Cri-Cri, including the e-Genius, E-Star, and culminating most recently with the E-Fan 1.2, as well as the fruits of the E-Aircraft Systems House collaboration with Siemens, will pave the way to a hybrid single-aisle commercial aircraft that is safe, efficient, and cost-effective,” said Paul Eremenko, Airbus’ Chief Technology Officer. “We see hybrid-electric propulsion as a compelling technology for the future of aviation.”

One of the main challenges of today’s aviation sector is to move towards a means of transport that is more efficient and less reliant on fossil fuels. The partners are committed to meeting the EU technical environmental goals of the European Commission’s Flightpath 2050 Vision for Aviation and they cannot be achieved with today’s technologies. Therefore, Airbus, Rolls-Royce and Siemens are investing in and focusing research work in different technology areas including electrification. Electric and hybrid-electric propulsion are seen today as among the most promising technologies for addressing these challenges.

Hero image source: Source Airbus

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