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News Article

Airbus, Rolls Royce Moving Toward Sustainability

By Sofía Hanna | Wed, 01/06/2021 - 15:14

The pandemic gave aerospace companies with reduced demand for new aircraft the chance to focus on sustainable advances. Companies like Rolls Royce and Airbus are two of the OEMs with sustainable projects that will revolutionize the environmental impact of the aerospace industry.

Airbus’ environmental venture is called “Airbus ZEROe.” So far, there have been three prototypes presented, completely powered by hydrogen, according to a Forbes article. As mentioned on the Airbus website, the aviation industry represents 2.5 percent of the total CO2 emissions, which is why the company has “the ambition to develop the world’s first zero-emission commercial aircraft by 2035 to ensure future generations can enjoy flying as much as we do.”

Rolls Royce’s project is called “ACCEL,” which focuses on creating the fastest all-electric aircraft. To achieve this, the company is working on a battery that can provide the energy required for a 200-mile flight with one charge. “It’s 6,000 cells are packaged for maximum lightness and thermal protection. An advanced cooling system can withstand the extreme temperatures and high-current in-flight demands,” reports Rolls Royce.

A recent UN release mentions that now, more than ever, people are noticing the importance of traveling and its role in sustainable development. Traveling contributes to 15 of the 17 UN sustainable development goals and it also allows people to “explore the ecological, historical and cultural diversity of the planet, as well as reconnect with family and loved ones.”

At the moment, the priority according to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), is to come up with new innovative measures to help the industry grow to what it once was. “The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an unprecedented loss of jobs and income, as well as the air connectivity that is the foundation for sustainable development and many humanitarian initiatives around the world,” mentions Salvatore Sciacchitano, President of ICAO.

Maintaining environmental goals has been a common trend in this sector since 2004, when ICAO adopted three major environmental goals, reports MBN. Now that part of the aerospace industry is on hold due to travel restrictions, there can be more research and advances toward reaching the maximum level of sustainability that can drive future benefits.

Photo by:   Sorasak, Unsplash
Sofía Hanna Sofía Hanna Junior Journalist and Industry Analyst