A Nordic initiative to drive the development of electric aircraft is now being launched. Funded by Nordic Innovation (an organisation under the Nordic Council of Ministers), a platform is created where Nordic players gather to develop the future of electric aviation.
“Technological innovations are key in solving aviation’s CO2 emission challenge”, says Jaakko Schildt, Chief Operating Officer, Finnair. “In this project, we are concretely creating the future of electric aviation, together, and taking an important step towards carbon-neutral flying.”
“The transition to sustainable air travel is existential to us and the aviation industry. Therefore, it is vital to exchange knowledge with other stakeholders to gain speed in the development of electric aircraft for commercial use. We have high ambitions for our sustainability work and we already collaborate with Airbus, among others, regarding the electrification of aviation,” says Lars Andersen Resare, Head of Environment and CSR at SAS.
“We will be a Nordic network that works with both infrastructure, industry issues and new business models”, says Maria Fiskerud, project manager for the Nordic Network for Electric Aviation (NEA).
The NEA network will organise workshops and other events to build knowledge and cooperation in the Nordic countries. At present, the network has eleven members: Air Greenland, Avinor, Braathens Regional Airlines, El-fly AS, Finnair, Heart Aerospace, Iceland Air, NISA (Nordic Innovation Sustainable Aviation), RISE, SAS and Swedavia.
The network has four focus areas with clear objectives for driving the growth of electric aircraft: standardising electric air infrastructure in the Nordic countries, developing business models for regional point-to-point connectivity between Nordic countries, developing aircraft technology for Nordic weather conditions and creating a platform for European and global collaborations.
“All the focus areas have the potential to create a lot of impact”, says Nina Egeli, Senior Innovation Advisor from Nordic Innovation. “We are talking about, amongst others, quality of life, sustainability, accessibility, as well as a huge potential for Nordic businesses to get on board with their innovations. When we combine the best of what the Nordic countries can deliver on mobility, the Nordic region and Nordic businesses can really make their mark and considerably strengthen their position at a global level.”