Though an electric or hybrid aircraft might sound like a fictional creation from a sci-fi movie, it’s actually a testament to how innovations in electrification have evolved throughout the years. With people becoming keener on lessening the impacts of pollution and greenhouse gasses, consumers are looking for more sustainable options in different aspects of their lives.
The choice to switch to more environmentally friendly methods of transportation is a perfect example of how consumers are choosing to be more sustainable. This is why electric and hybrid vehicles have become increasingly popular over the last decade. The industrial growth of electric vehicles has shown many companies the promising future that lies ahead within this sector.
Companies are also finding ways to expand electrification in different facets of transportation. Developing electric or hybrid aircraft has been in the works for many years, especially with the numerous environmental issues that are tied to the aviation industry.
The Environmental Impact of the Aviation Industry
Global warming and climate change are serious problems we must continuously address in the years to come. The depletion of the ozone layer and the greenhouse effect are two big environmental issues for the aviation industry. Globally, the aviation sector produces about 915 million tons of carbon dioxide.
Though land transport is still incomparably worse in numbers, around 12% of carbon dioxide emissions that contribute to climate change come from the aviation industry. Efforts to lessen the impact of aviation emissions can also be seen through the development of alternative fuels that are more sustainable and less detrimental to the environment.
Sustainable aviation fuel comes from by-products of waste or algae and can drastically reduce carbon footprints by 80%. While this all sounds promising, the development of electric or hybrid aircraft is seen as another brilliant alternative to the growing environmental problems we have today.
The Future of Electric and Hybrid Aircraft
The future is near for emission-free flights but of course, the technology would need to be full-proof before deemed consumer-ready. In recent years, electric aviation has displayed achievements by replicating routes that are taken by commercial flights. This was a big deal within the industry and it allowed major airline companies to visualize how it can totally change the market.
Though electric aviation does not seem tangible to many consumers at this point, different milestones within the last few years prove that it’s getting closer and closer to reality. Electric or hybrid aircraft will soon be a common sight in airports all over the world. Estimates show that by 2035, around 25% of the aviation industry will be either hybrid or electric.
It’s also important to note that huge technological strides in battery, motor, and aviation hardware have been made in the last decade. Research and development when it comes to electrification have always been considered one of the most promising methods to address our environmental issues. Electric and hybrid aircraft will also mean lesser labor costs and maintenance which will positively affect consumers when it comes to the cost of transportation.