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Collins Aerospace to begin fabrication of Airlander 10 electric motors in key step toward zero-emission aviation

We are pleased to announce that the E-HAV1 critical design review has been completed and Collins Aerospace has started fabrication of the 500 kilowatt electric motor for Airlander 10. The E-HAV1 programme is a partnership between HAV, Collins Aerospace, and the University of Nottingham.

Flight qualification testing of the motor is expected to occur in 2023, followed by hybrid-electric operation of Airlander 10 by 2025 and all-electric, zero-emission operation by 2030. To achieve these improvements, the aircraft’s four fuel-burning engines will be replaced by electric motors—beginning with the two forward engines in 2025 and the two rear engines in 2030.

Collins is designing and testing the motor at its Electronic Controls and Motor Systems Centre of Excellence in Solihull, where it recently invested $18 million to expand the campus and add world-class power electronics and motor development capabilities.

Airlander 10 has the potential to be the world’s first zero-emission aircraft, while pioneering game-changing electric flight technologies in the process. As the aerospace industry continues to look for ways to reduce its carbon footprint, electric propulsion offers a significant solution that will create a more sustainable future for our industry and our planet.

Marc Holme Senior Director, Electronic Controls and Motor Systems, Collins Aerospace

The Airlander programme will address key goals of the UK Aerospace Technology Strategy: strengthening the UK’s aerospace capabilities, positioning the UK for developing future generations of civil aircraft, and advancing a new generation of efficient propulsion technologies.

The Aerospace Technology Institute has clearly identified the importance of technology developments to support sustainable aviation through the UK Aerospace Technology Strategy, Accelerating Ambition. The Hybrid Air Vehicles Airlander 10 offers a unique opportunity to deploy innovative, high performance motor technology from Collins Aerospace initially in hybrid propulsion and, in the future, all electric propulsion configurations. These technology developments will enable economic growth and jobs in the UK aerospace sector.

Mark Scully Head of Technology - Advanced Systems & Propulsion, Aerospace Technology Institute

E-HAV1 is co-funded by the ATI Programme, a joint UK Government and industry investment to maintain and grow the UK's competitive position in civil aerospace design and manufacture. It is delivered through a partnership between the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI), Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and Innovate UK and address technology, capability, and supply chain challenges.

Read more about the E-HAV1 programme here.

Find out more about Airlander's journey to zero emissions here.

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