Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV) today launches a new partner programme which will enable key partners and customers to influence, optimise and propel forward the design specification of Airlander 50.
As Airlander 10 gears up to go into full-scale production, Airlander 50 is the next development step on Hybrid Air Vehicles’ journey, using Airlander technology to deliver a future of sustainable air freight transport for heavy lift, remote access and outsize cargos.
The Airlander 50 Development Partner Programme aims to understand the requirements of its future customers and use the regular insights and feedback from partners to shape and inform its conceptual design. Lead partners include AECOM, the world’s trusted infrastructure consulting firm and sustainable global fruits supplier Blue Skies Holdings, which operates in Africa to produce fruit based products for European retailers.
Unlike HAV’s first aircraft, Airlander 10, the Airlander 50 is optimised for logistics and freight transport, owing to its ability to carry a payload of 50-60 tonnes, and cargoes as large as 6 ISO shipping containers. Like Airlander 10, Airlander 50 will be able to move cargo or people point-to-point with minimal infrastructure. It will enable its users to bypass congested infrastructure such as ports, connect services to underserved locations, and avoid intermodal steps that currently interrupt journeys by sea, road and rail.
Airlander offers more available payload volume per unit weight compared to other aircraft. This enables it to transport outsize items such as wind turbines or supplies to remote mines - which can currently be difficult and expensive to move to their final destination.
Airlander 50 offers the potential to rapidly scale up a new set of affordable logistics connections. As with all Airlander aircraft, this will be achieved with minimal impact on the environment, delivering sustainable, large-scale air freight.
The Partner Programme will explore the range of these potential uses and their influence on vehicle design.