Rapid Technological Development Enables Regional Electric Aviation Routes Within 5–10 Years
The project FAIR investigates regional electric aviation in the Kvarken region and has published a unique compilation of the electric aviation industry’s technological development. The report describes existing and future airplane models that are powered by batteries or fuel cells, current regulations, and the need for a new airport infrastructure.
Electric and hybrid-electric airplanes are in a strong development phase, and the number of airplane models under development is constantly rising. BioFuel Region’s report Electric Aviation 2021 – Technology Overview, which was produced in the Interreg Botnia Atlantica project FAIR, summarizes the field’s latest advances.
Electric Aviation an Exciting Alternative for Regional Transports
Electric flights will become reality already during this decade. At the same time, battery technology progresses rapidly and will enable the flight range of 300 kilometers for 50-seater passenger planes in around 2030. The flight range of 8–9-seater planes may rise to one thousand kilometers.
Electric aviation will become an exciting alternative for regional transports. At present, there is only one certified electric aircraft on the market, a two-seater training plane. In terms of hybrid-electric and fully electric models, up to 19-seater planes are predicted to be on the market before 2030, explains Mr Arne Smedberg, CEO of BioFuel Region.
Several flying prototypes exist already today, but they need to undergo a comprehensive certification process before they can be put into commercial use. The electric aircraft’s powertrain, i.e. its electric motor, must be certified, and innovative design solutions that reduce air resistance and increase performance are also required in several cases.
Electric aviation also necessitates the modification of airport ground infrastructure, and an important question in the future will be the formation of an international standard for charging infrastructure. This aims to reduce insecurities concerning necessary investments at airports.
The Kvarken region’s actors must be well prepared in order to partake in the positive effects and innovations brought on by progress in electric aviation. FAIR aims to increase knowledge about electric aviation, investigate its possibilities, and map the technical investments that are required for the early and efficient commercialization of regional electric aviation in the Kvarken region. BioFuel Region’s report is an important knowledge base for understanding the industry’s development.
The Kvarken Council is the owner of FAIR, which consists of a broad partnership of both private and public operators. The project’s partnership grew in the spring 2021 with the addition of Norwegian representatives, and the project’s runtime was extended to 31 October 2022 at the same time. Nord University and MidtSkandia became new members of the project’s workgroup, whereas Nordland County Municipality, Brønnøy Municipality, Alstahaug Municipality, Helgeland Regional Council, Indre Helgeland Regional Council, Rana Utvikling and Nord University jumped in as new financiers. Interreg Botnia-Atlantica is the project’s main financier.
For more information:
Mr Arne Smedberg, CEO of BioFuel Region, +46-70 817 4230
Mr Mathias Lindström, Director of the Kvarken Council, +358-50 918 6462
FAIR (Finding innovations to Accelerate the Implementation of electric Regional aviation) is to be seen as a first step of preparing the Kvarken region for an early implementation of electric aviation.
The project increases the knowledge base about electric aviation, investigates the possibilities and surveys both the needs and the required technical investments. FAIR is an Interreg Botnia-Atlantica funded project.