With wildfires raging in Europe and some of the hottest ever recorded heat waves around the planet, lawmakers are working more and more to push industries into reducing carbon emissions. When it comes to cars, the demand and sales of electric vehicles have grown dramatically in the last few years. But what about the sky? Are major airlines waking up to the new green opportunities?
Airlines have been looking for more ways to reduce their carbon emission and get away from burning gas. This demand isn’t just coming from lawmakers, but from the public as well.
A study conducted by Booking.com revealed 55% of global travelers report being more determined to make sustainable travel choices. There has never been more demand for sustainable traveling and commercial aviation is seeing a growing pressure to catch up. As a result, a variety of new technologies and solutions are emerging to increase efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the aeronautical domain, and government regulations are increasing the requirements for efficiency and sustainable operations.
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In Brazil, which has been experiencing the devastating effects of global warming, fueling wildfires in its forests, a major deal was signed between one of its largest airlines Azul and an electric jet startup manufacturer Lilium.
Lilium claims to have manufactured the first-ever electric vertical takeoff and landing jet. It has announced plans to sell 220 of its vehicles for up to $1 billion to Brazilian airline Azul. The two firms said on Monday that they plan to build an eVTOL (electric vehicle takeoff and landing) aircraft network across Brazil between now and 2025. This collaboration aims to improve high-speed regional transportation in a country with about 100 million domestic air passengers annually.
The companies seek to develop a co-branded network in Brazil that will combine Azul’s vast expertise in the Brazilian market with Lilium’s innovative eVTOL aircraft platform. The beauty of being able to take off vertically is that extensive ground infrastructure is not needed.
The proprietary technology at the core of the Lilium Jet is Ducted Electric Vectored Thrust (DEVT), which they have refined through successive generations of technology demonstrators. Electric jet engines integrated into the wing flaps provide advantages in payload, aerodynamic efficiency and a lower noise profile, whilst also providing thrust vector control to maneuver the Lilium Jet through every phase of flight.
Lilium’s jet engines rely on just a single “stage” rotor/stator system driven by an electric motor with zero emissions. The Lilium jets will be cruising at 282 kmph (175 mph) and will have a maximum range of 250 km (155 miles).
Also, the technology used in Liliums aircrafts can be duplicated and improved upon for more long-range, large-capacity flights, accelerating our goal of reaching net zero. Hopefully going forward, the eVTOL network Lilium and Azul plan on developing in Brazil can be a model for other nations to implement as well.
Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed here by Impakter.com columnists are their own, not those of Impakter.com. — In the Featured Photo: an image from above the clouds. Featured Photo Credit: Pero Kalimero.