One of CARIBAVIA 2022 most discussed session was presented by Brice Nzeukou, Director of Business and Product Development at Ampaire. How and what is happening in terms of decarbonizing traditional Aviation? What are technologies of the future? What is even more important – what technologies are available already now?
Brice remained some very important basic points regarding Ampaire planes: they are hybrid-electric, they are useful today and scalable for the future.
All the aviation industry is putting a lot of efforts to achieve a greaner, cleaner and affordable furute for airlift. A lot of companies are working on eVTOL technologies, hydrogen technology is also developed from different angles, electric and autonomous vehicles.
Ampaire is developing, and flying, hybrid-electric aircraft today, making the way to future aviation. At this point, Ampaire has received 10+ internationally recognized awards.
Right after the session we had to ask some questions. Here are key points:
Q. Your first impressions after attending Caribbean Summit & retreat 2022? How this event is different?
A. The Caribavia event was an intimate and transparent conference where the challenges facing the tourism and aviation sectors were expertly presented. The structure of the conference facilitated open conversation which was very solution oriented and offered unique insight from key stakeholders in the region. We look forward to continuing to engage with the event to further establish the Caribbean as a sustainable aviation hub.
Q. Your statement is - decarbonizing traditional aviation. Why for Ampaire it is important to offer solutions existing here and now?
A. We should expect it will be many years, even decades, before aviation fully transitions to sustainable technologies. We want to accelerate that process. Our aim is to introduce new propulsion technologies that quickly prove that they reduce harmful emissions and are profitable for operators. When the operator community—for example, regional airlines in the Caribbean—see hybrid aircraft operated successfully, that will be a big impetus to convert to cleaner power. In fact, when they see pioneering operators cutting costs through sustainable technologies, they will be especially motivated to obtain those same benefits.
Q. Can you tell us more on the Eco Caravan FAA certification progress?
A. We are working today in close cooperation with FAA to develop agreed upon certification standards. The FAA has informed us that ours is the first application to certify a hybrid-electric propulsion system. Other companies are attempting to design entirely new aircraft with new types of propulsion, and we applaud them. We have given ourselves a simpler challenge—to develop a new propulsion system for an existing aircraft. This allows us to certify under a “supplemental type certificate.” This process is quicker, less expensive and imposes less technological risk. It’s the right place to start this industry transformation, in our view. Our plan is to certify the Eco Caravan in mid 2024.
Once back home, I still had a lot of questions, so I opted for a Zoom interview with Brice Nzeukou, enjoy :
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