Researchers Are Looking Into Hybrid Aircraft to Cut Down on Carbon Emissions

Part of the push towards electric-hybrid aircrafts roaming the skies is to cut down on carbon emissions that are produced by gas-guzzling aircraft. According to the NDRC, or Natural Resources Defense Council, in 2012, 98% of all apparel items imported came from air transport – which is the reason diesel electric hybrid GPU systems are being prioritized. The NDRC also reported that when a plane is used instead of a cargo ship, there are four to five times more particulate matter and 25 times more nitrous oxides added to the environment. This is an alarming number, as there has been a concentrated push towards air transport over cargo transport. If these numbers continue at the same rate, which is predicted, carbon emissions and particulate matter is set to triple by 2050.

International Agreement Pact

 Earlier this year, the ICAO announced that the first-ever international agreement to cut carbon emissions from commercial airplanes has been agreed upon. There are 23 countries that are participating with this new agreement, including the United States. The agreement calls for a 4% reduction in fuel consumption from new commercial aircraft that are built after 2028 and from aircraft in current production that will be delivered after the year 2023. This new agreement plans to cut down on carbon emissions from airplanes by more than 650 million tons between the years 2020 and 2040.

Advancements and Technologies

 The advancements of hybrid or electric power to improve automobiles are serving as the base technology that is being applied to aircraft – not to mention gas electric hybrid GPU systems. Currently, both engineers and scientists are actively researching the next generation of efficient aircraft. They are looking for planes that can roam the skies without dropping tons of carbon emissions into the environment. Although this is a tall task for engineers, the air will greatly benefit from it. One of their main objectives is to help shift the industry from solely using gas turbines to the implementation of hybrid or turboelectric propulsion. Now, there are numerous benefits to this such as: energy consumption, emissions, and noise. Moving toward alternative systems requires there to be new aircraft designs as well as propulsion systems that are going to integrate new battery technologies as well as electromagnetic machines like motors and generators. Researchers are continuing to look at alternate power systems that will generate electricity in the place of harmful gases.
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