American Airlines announced an investment in ZeroAvia, a developer of hydrogen-electric aviation. (Earlier post.) In addition to the investment, a memorandum of understanding provides American the opportunity to order up to 100 engines from ZeroAvia’s hydrogen-electric powertrain development program. The engines are intended to power regional jet aircraft with zero emissions.
ZeroAvia is working to achieve certain type certifications of its innovative propulsion technology that will pave the way for the engines to be incorporated into the regional jet market in the future. The ZA2000-RJ powertrain is anticipated to enable passengers to fly in zero-emission regional jets as early as the late 2020s.
This investment showcases another action on American’s path to achieve its climate goals, including achieving net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050. In addition to the strategy and progress outlined in American’s recently published Environmental, Social and Governance Report, other recent sustainability efforts by the airline include:
Receiving the industry’s first-ever CORSIA-certified batch of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) from Neste.
Reaching an agreement to purchase 500 million gallons of SAF over five years from Gevo, Inc., American’s most significant SAF commitment to date.
Becoming the first airline globally to receive validation from the Science Based Targets initiative for its 2035 GHG emissions reduction targets.
ZeroAvia is initially targeting a 300-mile range in 9-19 seat aircraft by 2024, and up to 700-mile range in 40-80 seat aircraft by 2026. Based in the UK and USA, ZeroAvia has already secured experimental certificates for its two-prototype aircraft from the CAA and FAA, passed significant flight test milestones, secured a number of key partnerships with major aircraft OEMs and major global airlines, and is on track for commercial operations in 2024.