The E-Fan X is the next step in Airbus’ electrification journey, and a giant leap towards achieving zero-emission flight over the next 20 years. This ambitious hybrid-electric aircraft demonstrator is expected to achieve significant fuel savings when it embarks on its first flight in 2021.
The E-Fan X is a complex hybrid-electric aircraft demonstrator. In the test aircraft, one of the four jet engines will be replaced by a 2MW electric motor, which is roughly equivalent to that of 10 medium-sized cars. The electric propulsion unit is powered by a power-generation system and battery. When high power is required—at take-off, for example—the generator and battery supply energy together.
If the aviation industry is to achieve its goal of a 75% reduction in CO2 in new aircraft by 2050, future technologies in electric mobility must be accelerated. The E-Fan X should achieve significant fuel savings. Our goal is to mature the technology, performance, safety and reliability, thereby accelerating progress on hybrid-electric technology. We also aim to establish the requirements for future certification of electric-powered commercial aircraft.