VALENCIAN airline, Air Nostrum, is part of an international consortium which today unveiled plans for its fully electric plane.
The consortium, which also includes Asturian airline Volotea, and Spanish start-up Dante Aeornautical, expects their first aircraft with this technology to be certified for flights in 2024.
It will mean an important step towards a future with emission-free aviation as this aircraft will play a crucial role in establishing zero-emission regional air transport, enabling connections to be made between small population centres, thanks to its reduced operating costs compared to much larger aircraft.
Initial plans and images of what will be the first prototype of a 100% electric aircraft show that a more sustainable aircraft is getting closer to becoming a reality. In fact, the consortium expects this initial prototype to be certified for flight in three years’ time, representing a major milestone for the aviation industry.
The collaboration involves the two major aircraft operators, Dante Aeronautical, artificial intelligence companies such as DataBeacon, engineering and technology innovation companies in the aviation sector, including the Spanish multinational CT, as well as public research organisations such as CIDAUT (the Foundation for Transport and Energy Research and Development – Fundación para la Investigación y Desarrollo en Transporte y Energía) and CIDETEC (The Specialised Energy-Storage Research Centre – Centro de Investigación Especializado en el Almacenamiento de Energía). The project is a clear example of commitment to technological innovation and sustainability.
Carlos Muñoz, Volotea’s founder and CEO said: “We started our collaboration with Dante Aeronautical back in 2019 and are very proud to see how the project has grown and gained momentum with the support of new partners, including several Spanish technology companies. The development of an electric aircraft using hydrogen and battery technology will reduce carbon emissions. It makes complete sense for Volotea to support this project since it’s completely in line with our goal of connecting underserviced cities and doing so in ways that are more sustainable.”
Carlos Bertomeu, Air Nostrum’s CEO, emphasised that the Valencian airline is experienced in working with SMEs and institutions. “The benefits of Air Nostrum’s collaborations with technology start-ups and universities to improve efficiency and passenger services are proven,” he stated. “As a leading regional airline, Air Nostrum clearly had much to contribute to this exciting project, especially in regards to sustainability, which is something that we have been working on for many years,” he concluded.
Miguel Madinabeitia, Dante Aeronautical’s co-founder, highlighted the agreement reached: “For Dante Aeronautical, expanding the consortium to include other innovative technology companies can only strengthen our plan to develop a 100% electric aircraft, which will revolutionise current thinking and move us towards cleaner and more sustainable transportation”. “This project also sits perfectly with our efforts in other parts of the world, such as our initiative in Australia to electrify Sydney Seaplanes’ aircrafts” stated Madinabeitia.