VoltAero performs test flight of electric-hybrid aircraft on 100% SAF

A VoltAero electric-hybrid aircraft is fuelled.
Photo Credit: VoltAero

VoltAero has conducted a landmark flight using its proprietary electric-hybrid powertrain, powered by 100 percent sustainable fuel courtesy of TotalEnergies.

This notable flight took place at VoltAero’s development facility in Royan, France, marking a significant step forward in sustainable aviation technology

A Sustainable Breakthrough

VoltAero’s milestone flight featured the Cassio S testbed airplane, serving as a platform to validate the electric-hybrid powertrain and sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) application.

This achievement carries significant weight in the aviation industry, with environmental sustainability at the forefront of global concerns.

VoltAero’s CEO and chief technology officer, Jean Botti, expressed their pride in being part of this remarkable accomplishment.

“Based on initial results, we calculated a truly impressive CO2 reduction of approximately 80 per cent while operating the Cassio powertrain in its electric-hybrid mode and with the internal combustion engine fueled by TotalEnergies’ Excellium Racing 100,” said Jean Botti.

This reduction underscores the potential for Cassio aircraft to play a pivotal role in aviation’s journey towards decarbonization.


Excellium Racing 100: A Sustainable Fuel

TotalEnergies’ Excellium Racing 100 fuel, derived from winemaking waste, has gained recognition for its sustainability.

This bioethanol-based fuel has already been utilized in high-profile automobile competitions, reducing CO2 emissions by at least 65 per cent over its entire life cycle compared to fossil fuels.

Its adoption in aviation represents a significant stride towards reducing the industry’s carbon footprint.

Joël Navaron, the president of TotalEnergies Aviation, emphasized their commitment to supporting aviation’s decarbonization objectives.

He mentioned ongoing efforts, including the installation of electric charging stations for general aviation aircraft and a pilot program aimed at offering SP98-type fuel for compatible aircraft.

These initiatives reflect TotalEnergies’ dedication to addressing the challenges of general aviation’s decarbonization.

Cassio 330. Photo Credit: VoltAero

The Future of Cassio Aircraft

VoltAero’s Cassio family of aircraft is poised to become a game-changer in the aviation industry.

Designed to cater to regional commercial operators, air taxi/charter companies, private owners, and utility applications such as cargo transport and medical evacuation (medevac), these aircraft are set to revolutionize the way we fly.

The key to Cassio’s exceptional performance lies in VoltAero’s patented electric-hybrid propulsion system. This innovative technology combines an electric motor for taxi, takeoff, primary flight for shorter distances, and landing.

For longer journeys, an internal combustion engine acts as a range extender, recharging the batteries in flight.

Importantly, this hybrid system ensures fail-safe functionality in case of any issues with the electric propulsion.

VoltAero’s production lineup includes the Cassio 330, Cassio 480, and Cassio 600, each offering varying seating capacities and electric-hybrid propulsion power.

The Cassio 330, with its four/five-seat interior configuration and 330-kilowatt propulsion power, is set to be the first production aircraft in this groundbreaking series.

The Cassio 480, with a six-seat layout and 480-kilowatt electric-hybrid propulsion, and the Cassio 600, boasting a 10/12-seat capacity and 600-kilowatt propulsion power, will follow suit.

These aircraft promise an order of magnitude higher performance compared to existing competition and significantly lower operational costs.

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By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 4 Min Read
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