Swedish electric airplane maker Heart Aerospace unveiled significant design updates to its first electric aircraft and confirmed on 15 September, bringing commercial electric flying one step forward.
The new airplane design, called the ES-30, is a regional electric airplane with a capacity of 30 passengers and it replaces the company’s earlier 19-seat design, the ES-19. It is driven by electric motors powered by batteries, which allows the airplane to operate with zero emissions and low noise.
The ES-30 is an electric airplane that the industry can actually use. We have designed a cost-efficient airplane that allows airlines to deliver good service on a wide range of routes.Anders Forslund, founder and CEO of Heart Aerospace
The ES-30 has a three-abreast flat-floor cabin seating and it features a galley and a lavatory. Cabin stowage and overhead bins will add to the large external baggage and cargo compartment and provide airlines with network flexibility.
The airplane will also include a reserve-hybrid configuration, consisting of two turbo generators powered by sustainable aviation fuel. The reserve-hybrid system is installed to secure reserve energy requirements without cannibalizing battery range and it can also be used during cruise on longer flights to complement the electrical power provided by the batteries. This gives the airplane a fully electric range of 200 kilometres, an extended range of 400 kilometres with 30 passengers and flexibility to fly up to 800 kilometres with 25 passengers, all-inclusive of typical airline reserves.
The ES-30 is a cost-efficient airplane that, on top of significant fuel savings, is cheaper to operate than a larger turboprop due to its electric propulsion. The airplane has also been designed to accommodate battery technology evolution, which will increase its fully electric range and make it even more cost efficient over time. . “With the ES-30 we can start cutting emissions from air travel well before the end of this decade and the response from the market has been fantastic.” said Anders Forslund, founder and CEO of Heart Aerospace The ES-30 is expected to enter into service in 2028.
Air Canada and Saab have each invested USD 5 million in Heart Aerospace. In addition to its investment, Air Canada has also placed a purchase order for 30 ES-30 aircraft.
This underlines our commitment to innovative technology and solutions for sustainable aviation. Heart is a pioneer within commercial electric aviation and we look forward to contributing to the future of aviation with our experience of developing solutions at the forefront of technology.Micael Johansson, Saab’s President and CEO.
“We are thrilled to have two such strong partners as Saab and Air Canada join our mission to electrify regional air travel. Growing up in Sweden, Saab is synonymous with aerospace, and our partnership will not only support our programme, but help us become a part of the proud Swedish aerospace heritage,” said Anders Forslund, founder and CEO of Heart Aerospace.
“Air Canada is very pleased to partner with Heart Aerospace on the development of this evolutionary aircraft. We have been working hard with much success to reduce our footprint, but we know that meeting our net-zero emissions goals will require new technology such as the ES-30. We have every confidence that the team at Heart Aerospace has the expertise to deliver on the ES-30’s promise of a cleaner and greener aviation future,” added Michael Rousseau, President and Chief Executive of Air Canada.
Previous orders for Heart Aerospace’s ES-19 electric airplane, placed by United Airlines and Mesa Air Group for a total of 200 electric aircraft with an option for an additional 100 planes, are reconfirmed for the updated ES-30 design.
In addition to those commitments, many of the ES-19 letters of intent (LOI) holders have already updated their respective letters to reflect the ES-30. These include the Nordic airlines Braathens Regional Airlines (BRA), Icelandair and SAS as well as New Zealand’s Sounds Air. Rockton, a Swedish-based lessor who has made it their mission to focus on sustainable solutions for the industry, has just signed a LOI for up to 40 airplanes. In total, Heart Aerospace indicated it has LOIs for 96 ES-30s.