Electric aircraft developer Ampaire and engineering firm Black & Veatch to collaborate on developing airport electrification and electric aircraft charging infrastructure.
A memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the two companies has emphasized solar, energy storage and sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) supply chain development.
The collaboration includes a commitment to identify and evaluate opportunities to plan, engineer and construct electric infrastructure at airports. Their commercial focus is on early adopters in the Americas, Europe and Asia.
The initiative seeks to include a broad range of air and ground side stakeholders.
“Ampaire is committed to putting zero-emissions aircraft into widespread service by mid-decade. These hybrid-electric aircraft will benefit from the buildout of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and electric charging infrastructure, making zero emission possible for meaningful service range. That’s why we consider this teaming arrangement so important,” said Susan Ying, senior vice president of global partnerships for Ampaire.
Susan added, “Aircraft companies must be involved in defining airport fueling and charging infrastructure. We are therefore very pleased to work with Black & Veatch on this common objective.”
“Governments, companies and communities around the world are making lowering their carbon footprints a priority, and the transportation sector is helping accelerate positive change,” said Paul Stith, Black & Veatch’s associate vice president of global transportation initiatives.
Paul added, “Decarbonization of aviation is challenging and requires technology and collaboration. Tackling emissions with concurrent SAF and electrification strategies offers a shining example of what’s possible in doing things cleaner and greener, and we’re excited about working with Ampaire to reshape tomorrow’s air mobility through infrastructure and innovation.”
Following a successful 2020 test in 2021 Ampaire flew their Electric EEL aircraft 481 miles (774km) nonstop from Perth, Scotland to Exeter in England. The a six-seat Cessna was modified with hybrid-electric propulsion.
It is to date the longest flight by a commercial-sized, hybrid-electric aircraft. In May 2022, Ampaire began ground power runs of its Eco Caravan hybrid-electric upgrade of the Cessna Grand Caravan, slated for certification and service introduction in mid-2024.