January 27, 2023, ©. Leeham News: Last week, we learned the main pathways to Sustainable Aviation Fuel and their production volumes for the next years.
Now we look at the feedstocks, what output we get from these, and how to safeguard the pathway is ethical and sustainable. Finally, we look at the cost of SAF until 2050.
January 20, 2023, ©. Leeham News: Having introduced Sustainable Aviation Fuel, SAF, as essential for reducing Green House Gases (GHG) until 2050, we now look at how SAF is produced, what pathways from feedstock to SAF are the main ones, and what are the short and long-term potentials of the different pathways.
I was helped to grasp the area by Neste’s EVP of Renewable Aviation fuel, Thorsten Lange, who, after we met when he presented at the Airbus Summit in November (Neste is a leading SAF producer), took the time to explain the subject to me last week. He also recommended a report we use to understand SAF.
January 6, 2023, ©. Leeham News: Since we started this series about our Air Transports and their pollution, we have covered different schemes of reduction such as improved Air Traffic Control (ATC), change to electric aircraft (battery/hybrids) or hydrogen as fuel, and lastly, eVTOLs.
Of these changes, only ATC can have a short-term effect, but it’s a slow mover for organizational reasons.
Changes to how our aircraft are propelled are, unfortunately, longer-term improvements, as we see in an example below.
But we need fast change. We’ve had the craziest of summer and now winter in Europe, where I live, and it’s not a one-time variation. And this is not confined to Europe; the weather change is faster than we thought, and it’s worldwide.
So what can we do?
December 23, 2022, ©. Leeham News: After 25 articles about the eVTOL, it’s time for a wrap. We have looked at most aspects of this new form of air transportation, including how sustainable it is.
Today we summarize what we found before we go on to the next subject in Sustainable Air Transport.
December 16, 2022, ©. Leeham News: Last week, we looked at the production costs of our typical eVTOL. We could see that it was far higher than Joby’s assumption of $1.3m for the S4, about three times higher for units above 500 and even higher for earlier units.
Let’s examine where such cost numbers come from. It’s about production ramp hockey sticks and numbers never seen before. Are these credible?
December 9, 2022, ©. Leeham News: This is a summary of the article Part 49P, eVTOL production costs. It discusses the production costs of our typical eVTOL (Figure 1) and its drain on the OEM’s finances.
New aircraft projects chronically underestimate the production cost of their certified products. One factor is the effect of the learning curves on the cost items.
By Bjorn Fehrm
December 9, 2022, ©. Leeham News: This is a complementary article to Part 49, eVTOL production costs. It discusses the typical production costs of a certified eVTOL when produced in large quantities.
eVTOLs will be produced under aeronautical production certification conditions, using aeronautical grade material and system. Our production cost model predicts such costs, including learning curve effects for each material type.
December 2, 2022, ©. Leeham News: Last week, we started looking at the air traffic problem of eVTOLs. The rulemaking on how these shall avoid running into each other, other aircraft, and drones outside controlled airspace is not done.
The first general principle has been issued by European rule-makers dealing with how drone traffic shall be regulated, and this will also be expanded to cover VTOLs. Airbus, the world’s largest vertical transport supplier, through its helicopters, gave its view on VTOL operations in its two-day Summit this week.
November 25, 2022, ©. Leeham News: We have gone through the flight principles for different eVTOLs, the critical systems such as battery systems and flight controls, their energy consumption/performance, and how green they are compared to other ways of getting to an airport.
This is all about the flying vehicle. But it’s only part of the system needed for this transport system to work and be safe. We now discuss the other bits needed.
November 18, 2022, ©. Leeham News: In the comments to last week’s Corner, there were requests for a comparison with a helicopter re. Sustainability (kWh/km). Here you go.
I also threw in a cost of operations discussion, as the helicopter is the present alternative to an eVTOL for city-to-airport air transports.