Propelling the design and development of a unique freight delivery service
Hybrid Air Vehicles has launched a partner programme to propel the design specification of Airlander 50, its freight delivery solution.
Airlander 10 is the world’s largest aircraft. A plane/airship hybrid, it is designed to stay airborne for up to five days at a time to fulfil a wide range of communication and survey roles, as well as cargo carrying and tourist passenger flights.
As Airlander 10 gears up to go into full-scale production, Airlander 50 is the company’s next focus.
Using the same technology, Airlander 50 aims to deliver a future of sustainable air freight transport for heavy lift, remote access, and outsize cargos.
It has the ability to carry a payload of 50-60 tonnes and cargoes as large as six ISO shipping containers. This enables it to transport items such as wind turbines or supplies to remote mines – which can currently be difficult and expensive to move to their final destination.
It will enable users to bypass congested infrastructure such as ports and avoid intermodal steps that currently interrupt journeys by sea, road, and rail.
All of this will be achieved with minimal impact on the environment.
George Land, Commercial Business Development Director, Hybrid Air Vehicles said: “Airlander 50 will be the next member of the Airlander family of aircraft that follows Airlander 10. Today we are very pleased to be launching the Development Partner Programme for this aircraft, enabling us to refine its specification using real world use cases and feedback from a diverse set of potential customer, operator, and infrastructure partners.”
The Airlander 50 Development Partner Programme aims to understand the requirements of future customers and use regular insights and feedback from partners to shape and inform its conceptual design.
- AECOM, an infrastructure consulting firm
- Blue Skies Holdings – sustainable global fruits supplier
- Infinergy – an independent renewable energy company
- Highlands and Islands Airports Limited – a company based at Inverness Airport that owns and operates 11 airports in the Scottish Highlands, the Northern Isles and the Western Isles
Colin Wood, Chief Executive for Europe and India, AECOM said: “The technology and design intelligence to enable low carbon aviation is moving at a rapid pace and it is through collaboration that we can innovate to bring impactful solutions to market quickly. We have committed to reducing carbon emissions as part of our Sustainable Legacies strategy and this Development Partner Programme brings the opportunity to shape and support delivery of the Airlander 50, which is a hugely important project in the drive to reduce carbon emissions from the freight transportation sector.”
Members of the programme will also put forward their specific use cases for Airlander 50 to enable investigation into their operational practicality and economic feasibility.
Hugh Pile, CEO, Blue Skies Holdings said: “The Airlander project provides an exciting opportunity for Blue Skies. Moving products and raw materials between countries, particularly in West Africa, can be difficult due to challenging road conditions, border delays and a measure of bureaucracy. Blue Skies is very interested in Airlander as it will enable the business to move raw materials from farms to factories with greater efficiency and with a vastly reduced carbon footprint.”