Aviation is becoming climate-neutral. How this could be achieved was presented by leading aviation and aerospace experts at the EU AeroDays in Berlin. Sustainable fuels, hydrogen and digitalisation play a key role in achieving these goals.
Leading aviation and aerospace representatives from politics and business have shown the path to climate neutrality in Berlin. At the high-profile EU AeroDays, leading voices of the industry met to discuss the way out of the crisis and towards emission-free flying. The representatives were agreed: only the combination of different technologies will lead to success.
For energy transition in the skies
The leading topic of the conference, co-organised by the German Ministry of Economic Affairs and the European Commission was the transition in energy supply: fossil fuels must be replaced. Hydrogen will play a prominent role in this process. However, this will require significant changes to infrastructure and aircraft design. This can only be achieved through efforts by society as a whole and considerable investments in this technology as climate-neutral aviation requires appropriate aircraft.
There is no silver bullet to climate neutrality
The experts agreed that no single technology will lead to climate-neutrality. Only the combination of innovative solutions will enable the sustainable reduction of emissions. In the short term, so-called sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) will play a key role in the reduction of emissions. Processes must also become more efficient, above all the air traffic management should be fully digitalised.
EU AeroDays point the way to aviation of the future
The EU AeroDays are the most important high-level meeting of this kind in Europe. They deal with how research, innovation and technology can be driven forward to make aviation even more sustainable, digital and competitive. The event has brought together leading figures from research, politics, industry, finance and energy in Berlin as part of the German EU Council Presidency. The EU AeroDays kicked off on November 24, 2020 with the Berlin Aviation Summit (BAS).
Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury speaks at German Industry Day about climate-neutrality and the challenges posed by the corona crisis.
On the occasion of German Industry Day on 6 October 2020, Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury emphasised the severity of the corona crisis and the importance of climate-neutrality for aviation. Guillaume Faury spoke at the Federation of German Industries (BDI) about specific steps to reduce emissions and the necessary actions to achieve climate-neutrality.
The aerospace industry is facing the most severe crisis. Nevertheless, Airbus has set ambitious goals. Faury outlined how the energy transition in the skies can succeed: "Even today, airlines can fly with up to 50% bio-fuel”. This helps in the short term to reduce emissions. The long-term objective of climate-neutrality can be reached with hydrogen. However, for all these technologies availability and cost are crucial.
Airbus has an ambitious timeline. "We expect these alternative fuels to be technologically mature by 2027/2028", said Faury. In turn, Airbus will be able to develop the world's first climate-neutral commercial aircraft by 2035. As a result, it is important to establish uniform political regulations to avoid inconsistencies between different countries. Through this, the objective of climate-neutral flight can be achieved. The Airbus CEO sums up: "Climate-neutrality is a competitive advantage".
50 years pioneering progress: Airbus executives met with political decision-makers in Berlin on 12 September to celebrate the half-centenary Airbus. The guests at the event underlined the significance of Airbus for Europe and Germany.
Guest of honour Klaus von Dohnanyi was one of the most important trailblazers of a common European aerospace industry. In his speech, the former Federal Minister for Education and Science and long-time First Mayor of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg recalled the birthday of Airbus in 1969. He remarked that Airbus triumphed against all the scepticism and strong opposition to become a world-market leader.
With more than 50,000 employees at 27 locations, Airbus ranks among the most important employers in Germany. This was highlighted by Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury: “Today, the European aviation industry employs around 500,000 people. Never before has the industry been so economically important. That’s not to mention the positive impacts it has on Germany: one in six civilian aircraft delivered around the world has its origin here.”
This was reinforced by Peter Altmaier, German Federal Minister for Economy and Energy. He emphasised the pioneering role played by Airbus, which was exhibited time and again over the course of the last 50 years. He added that the German government would also play a part in supporting the success of Airbus in the future.
Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury speaks about Europe's future and sustainability at DGAP in Berlin.
On the occasion of Europe Day on 9 May, Airbus CEO Guillaume Faury has delivered his first speech in Berlin following his appointment in April. Guillaume Faury spoke at the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP) about Europe’s challenges and opportunities.
The new Airbus CEO — who delivered his remarks in German — emphasised the continued importance of Europe for generations to come.
Hamburg's First Mayor, Dr. Peter Tschentscher, got to know the latest innovations from Airbus at the Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX), including the A320 Airspace Cabin with extra-large luggage storage compartments and the innovative Airbus Connected Experience platform.
At the beginning of April, the most important aircraft cabin innovations were presented at the Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX). Hamburg's First Mayor, Dr. Peter Tschentscher, was impressed by Airbus’ cabin innovations. In particular, the Airbus Connected Experience was met with great interest. This platform links the core elements of the aircraft cabin in real time, including the galley, trolleys, seats and luggage compartments. Passengers can now personalise their flight experience. For example, they can pre-order food based on individual preference prediction. Airlines are also seeing new opportunities for predictive maintenance and more efficient resource management.
In addition, Dr. Tschentscher was intrigued by the A320 Airspace cabin. With extra-large luggage compartments, this new cabin provides additional passenger extra-large storage space and numerous airline options to customise the cabin accordingly. For example, the LED lighting can be adjusted, further improving the flying experience.
During his visit, Dr. Peter Tschentscher highlighted the importance of Airbus for Hamburg and Germany. Every sixth aircraft worldwide comes from Hamburg and every new aircraft contains high-tech made in Germany. Airbus plays a central role for Germany as an industrial hub and secures prosperity in Europe. Hamburg is a key pillar for this.
The Minister President of Bavaria, Dr Markus Söder, visited the Airbus site in Ottobrunn and emphasised the importance of aerospace for Bavaria and Germany.
To mark the beginning of the building of the Industry 4.0 factory in Ottobrunn, the Minister President of Bavaria, Dr Markus Söder, has visited the Airbus site. This factory of the future enables the automatisation and digitalisation of production of solar arrays for satellites. This includes science satellites like Europa Clipper or Juice as well as numerous satellite constellations.
With approximately 2,500 employees, Ottobrunn is one of the most important Airbus sites and a crucial economic factor in the region. A broad range of components are manufactured at the Airbus plant, including solar generators (solar panels), which produce electric energy for manned and unmanned space systems. Airbus is now investing 15 million Euros in the site. Processing time and costs will be halved through new automated assembly lines. This strengthens the competitiveness of Airbus and the whole region.
Minister President Dr Markus Söder is certain that the site is best-equipped for the times ahead: “Airbus knows: technology is the futue.”
Dr. Peter Tschentscher has visited the Airbus plant in Hamburg and highlighted the importance of the site during this inaugural visit.
Every sixth aircraft in the world is delivered by Airbus in Hamburg. With more than 300 companies and over 42,000 employees, the Hanseatic City of Hamburg is the third largest site of the civil aviation industry in the world. The opening of the fourth assembly line for the A320 family last June was an important step on the way to the factory of the future. It reinforces one of the most important aerospace locations of the country, which will be able to produce an additional 10 aircraft per month in the future.
During his inaugural visit, the First Mayor highlighted the importance of the aviation industry in Hamburg. “The targeted networking of science and economy at the site makes Hamburg the Silicon Valley of aviation in Europe,” said Dr. Tschentscher.