US charter carrier JSX signs letters of intent with three different OEMs for 332 hybrid-electric aircraft.
The deals could see the company acquire up to 82 of the 9-seat Electra eSTOL aircraft, with 32 firm orders and 50 options, up to 150 of the 19-seat Aura Aero Electric Regional Aircraft (ERA) with 50 firm orders and 100 options, and up to 100 of the 30-seat Heart Aerospace ES-30, with 50 firm orders and 50 options.
JSX, which was founded in 2016 and is a Part 135 operator, plans to begin operating its first hybrid-electric aircraft in 2028. Combined, the orders represent one of the largest made by any aircraft operator to date.
According to the company it is the biggest public charter carrier in the US, operating point-to-point flights to 24 destinations.
Alex Wilcox, CEO and co-founder of JSX said, “Today’s order of hybrid-electric aircraft exemplifies our commitment to achievable, customer-friendly, carbon-reducing solutions that will offer the lower costs essential to providing vital air service to smaller communities across the country.
“As the network airlines order ever-larger aircraft it is inevitable that more and more small markets will be abandoned. Electra, Aura Aero, and Heart Aerospace are visionary organizations that share in JSX’s commitment to serving smaller communities, working together with us to weave sustainable regional air travel back into the fabric of American commerce and freedom of movement.”
Heart, which is based in Gothenburg and was founded in 2018 is developing the ES-30 as a conventional fixed-wing aircraft with four electric motors powered by batteries and a reserve-hybrid system consisting of two turbo generators powered by sustainable aviation fuel. The 30-passenger aircraft has a planned electric-only range of 200km (125 miles) and an extended range of 400km (250 miles) in hybrid mode with the capability to fly up to 800km (500 miles) with 25 passengers.
Electra is based in Virginia, USA and is developing an eSTOL (electric short take-off and landing) aircraft it plans to certify and enter into commercial service under FAA Part 23 regulations during 2028.
The nine-passenger aircraft will be able to take off and land with ground rolls as short as 150ft (45m) and fly at speeds of 200mph (320km/h) up to distances of 500 miles (800km).
Aura-Aero is based in Toulouse, France. The company’s ERA is a 19-seater aircraft with a planned 300 mile (480km) range and an entry into service before 2030.