- New concept study finds Airlander 10’s addition to the transport ecosystem in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland could deliver new opportunities for green passenger and freight transportation and increase economic opportunities for the region by adding capacity quickly and cost-effectively.
- Airlander 10 can carry 100 passengers (or a payload of 10 tonnes), providing comfortable low-emissions travel
Hybrid Air Vehicles has today announced the results of a first of its kind concept study into the role of Airlander, the world’s most efficient large aircraft, finding that it can deliver cost-effective, low-emission passenger transport and freight to the Highland and Island communities in the North of Scotland. The study was part funded by the UK Government through UKRI funding to the SATE (Sustainable Aviation Test Environment) project of which HAV is a partner.
The report was supported by AECOM, Highlands and Islands Airports Limited (HIAL), Highlands and Islands Transport Partnership (HITRANS), Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), Orkney Islands Council (OIC) and Loganair, who are all engaged stakeholders in the development and potential of Airlander and how it may operate in the region and offer new solutions to connectivity challenges.
The report highlights that Airlander could help to decarbonise regional travel, add freight capacity into the network and could also provide further economic growth through tourism. It also analyses the forecast dispatch availability given the imperative to maximise operations in the prevailing conditions with minimal delays. The report found that Airlander would provide a high dispatch availability when surveyed against historic weather data and can operate successfully from a range of airports, small Island airfields and bodies of sheltered water.
The study concluded that the integration of Airlander into established inter-island transport services could greatly improve regional connectivity, offering a significant expansion of current services, in an area that has been traditionally hard to serve given its outlying islands and highly variable weather conditions. Airlander represents a new category of transport that will enable initially low emissions services with the promise of modification to zero emissions (using electric propulsion and green hydrogen fuel cells). This will assist the region to attain the goal of a net zero Scottish regional air transport by 2040. Airlander 10 allows a 10 tonne or 100 passenger capacity to be delivered to small airfields currently suited to much smaller aircraft, with low-cost and nominal adaptations to existing infrastructure. The total cost of modifying the six airfields surveyed was less than £2 million.
Extracted from Airlander website - read more here