Swedish startup reveals electric powertrain for ES-19 regional airliner

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A Swedish startup developing an all-electric regional airliner has revealed the electric drivetrain and battery technology it will use in its regional airliner.

Heart Aerospace, which is based at Säve Airport in Gothenburg, Sweden plans to have its ES-19 aircraft operating by 2025.

The 19-seater aircraft will have a range of 400km (250 miles), a top speed of 215 knots and will be able to operate from runways just 750m (2,461ft) long. The ES-19 will be offered in commercial and corporate variants.

At the unveiling of its electric powertrain, the company said that meaningful range can now be obtained by aircraft using today’s battery technology, thanks to R&D investment from the automotive industry and that it has had interest from eight airlines in purchasing the ES-19.

Heart Aerospace which was founded in 2018, and is targeting the short-haul air travel market under 2,000km (1,200 miles) with its aircraft development. According to the International Council on Clean Transportation, air travel under 2,000km is the most polluting segment of air travel and accounts for 85% of departures and 43% of CO2 emissions.

Anders Forslund, CEO and founder of Heart Aerospace, said, “The aviation industry is facing a two-fold problem – reconciling itself with a carbon-constrained world and coronavirus hindering passenger demand for flights, particularly long-haul.

“This is a reset moment, as across the board, the provision of public finance comes with the caveat that bailouts will only be offered in exchange for cutting emissions and electric aircraft could be the most sustainable and cost-effective way to travel.

“Sweden has committed to make all domestic flights fossil-fuel-free by 2030 and Norway is targeting all domestic flights to be 100% electric by 2040. To achieve these goals, we have to get to work now.

“The technology is here and scale is possible for short-haul flights, which account for nearly half of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions. We can’t wait for progress to happen ­­– that’s not how innovation works.

“This unveiling is a testament to this ambition and I am delighted to be part of a team powering a greener future for everyone.”

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Ben has worked as a journalist and editor, covering almost all aspects of technology, engineering and industry for the last 20 years. Initially writing about subjects from nuclear submarines to autonomous cars to future design and manufacturing technologies, he was editor of a leading UK-based engineering magazine before eventually becoming editor of Aerospace Testing in 2017.

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