Industry Airbus reveals zero-emission concept aircraft family ZEROe

Aircraft manufacturer Airbus has revealed a new set of zero-emission concept aircraft called ZEROe.

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Airbus has revealed three new concepts for the world´s first zero-emission commercial aircraft. All concepts are representing a different approach on achieving zero-emission flight by 2035. The manufacturer is exploring new technologies and aerodynamic advantages for aircraft to achieve its zero-emission goal.

Guillaume Faury, Airbus CEO said: “This is a historic moment for the commercial aviation sector as a whole and we intend to play a leading role in the most important transition this industry has ever seen. The concepts we unveil today offer the world a glimpse of our ambition to drive a bold vision for the future of zero-emission flight [...] I strongly believe that the use of hydrogen - both in synthetic fuels and as a primary power source for commercial aircraft - has the potential to significantly reduce aviation's climate impact.” 

As Faury said, all aircraft concepts are based on the use of hydrogen as its main power source. This option holds exceptional promise for a clean aviation in the future, Airbus stated. Hydrogen could be a solution not only for the aviation industry, but also for other industries to meet their climate-neutral targets.

At first, Airbus has announced a turbofan design. This Aircraft will be able to accommodate 120-200 passengers and has a range of more than 2,000 nautical miles. Operators could use the aircraft for transcontinental flights. The liquid hydrogen will be stored and distributed from tanks located behind the rear pressure bulkhead.

Airbus ZEROe Turbofan design © Airbus
Airbus ZEROe Turbofan design © Airbus

Next up, Airbus released a turboprop aircraft that can accommodate up to 100 passengers using two turboprop engines instead of turbofans. The hydrogen-powered gas-turbine engines will allow the aircraft to fly for up to 1,000 nautical miles. The aircraft will be most suited for short-haul flights.

Airbus ZEROe Turboprop design © Airbus
Airbus ZEROe Turboprop design © Airbus

The third design is a blended-wing body aircraft, in which the wings merge together with the main aircraft fuselage. This ZEROe variant could be capable of transporting up to 200 passengers with a range similar to the turboprop aircraft.

Airbus ZEROe Blended Wing design © Airbus
Airbus ZEROe Blended Wing design © Airbus

“These concepts will help us explore and mature the design and layout of the world’s first climate-neutral, zero-emission commercial aircraft, which we aim to put into service by 2035,” Guillaume Faury added. “The transition to hydrogen, as the primary power source for these concept planes, will require decisive action from the entire aviation ecosystem. Together with the support from government and industrial partners we can rise up to this challenge to scale-up renewable energy and hydrogen for the sustainable future of the aviation industry.”

Source © airbus.com

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