As part of the business’s progress report on Energia, Embraer’s initiative to move the aviation industry to net zero by 2050, the firm unveiled new aircraft concepts.
After announcing the study of four new aircraft concepts driven by cutting-edge technology and renewable energy sources at its Sustainability in Action event, Embraer has concentrated on two 19–30 seater designs for hybrid electric and hydrogen-electric propulsion. These two net-zero approaches provide a technically viable and financially viable route to net-zero under the direction of the company’s 50 years of technical competence, external input from airlines, and cooperative research with engine OEMs.
The Shape Of Things To Come was used by the Brazilian manufacturer to distribute the upgrades. The hour-long presentation was broadcast live to the entire world on YouTube from Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and So José dos Campos, Brazil.
The Energia Family, which was first unveiled in November 2021, consists of four concept airplanes of differing sizes that use an electric, hydrogen fuel cell, dual fuel gas turbine, and hybrid-electric propulsion systems.
• The 9-seat hybrid-electric Energia Hybrid (E9-HE), which has its engines situated at the back.
• The nine-seat, fully electric-powered Energia Electric (E9-FE), which has aft contra-rotating propellers.
• The 19-seat hydrogen-electric propulsion aircraft Energia H2 Fuel Cell (E19-H2FC), which has electric engines installed at the back.
• The Energia H2 Gas Turbine (E50-H2GT), a 35 to 50-seat aircraft powered by SAF/JetA turbines or hydrogen.
The Brazilian startup has narrowed down the concepts it will concentrate on in the upcoming year after a year of development. The manufacturer will focus its resources in the following phase on creating SAF-based hybrid-electric propulsion and hydrogen-electric propulsion. The business opted to proceed with 19 and 30-seater airplanes in addition to focusing on propulsion technology.
Embraer is discontinuing its fully electric jet altogether while increasing the size of its hybrid-electric 9-seater to 19-seater. There is fierce competition in the 9-seat market, where various engine manufacturers, including MagniX and Ampaire, are developing Cessna 208 conversions. It makes sense for Embraer to advance the technology with smaller aircraft on the high end before committing to a timeline for the 50-seater’s readiness.
The Energia H2FC shares many similarities with the model Embraer unveiled last year. The plane still has two propeller engines installed in the back and a T-tail. The aircraft’s builder claims that this design gave the wing a clean appearance, improved aerodynamics, and a shorter harness to reduce energy loss.
The air inlet at the foot of the empennage is a conspicuous addition. It needs RAM air to cool down the battery pack because of the heat produced by the fuel cell located in the tail.
The business also revealed the airplane’s Hydrogen range. Embraer projects a 200-nm range for the aircraft, noting that this figure does not account for regulatory reserves or anticipated fuel cell degradations. The aircraft should be technologically capable by 2035, according to the manufacturer.
The Energia E19-HE uses a parallel design as opposed to many other concepts, such as the Heart Aerospace ES-30, which uses a gas turbine as a generator to power an electric engine. While the standard thermal engine’s high efficiency is utilized by the aircraft during the cruising phase, battery cells are utilized during the aircraft’s high power phases, such as taxing and takeoff. Because of this design, the plane can transport a smaller battery pack, which enhances flight efficiency.
It didn’t need an intake like the one on the E9-H2FC because it just has a small battery back and uses conventional propulsion for the majority of the flight. The Brazilian company claims that utilizing SAF could save carbon emissions by 90% because of its reduced weight. In 2030, the E19-HE should be technologically capable.