In the business of flying, airline companies compete to put as many aeroplanes as possible in the sky because each take-off represents incoming revenues. To earn more money, these companies are purchasing new aircraft in a bid to secure more passengers on board and in the skies. But there is a limit to the number of new planes each company can buy as it is not a simple purchase. A new Airbus A350, which is a favourite amongst airlines like Qatar Airways, could cost a company at least US$350 million.
As a result of this constraint, airline companies are forced to look at other possible ways, which means targeting the jetliners’ speed. In other words, faster flights equate to more revenue. That was one of the reasons for the birth of the Concorde, the world’s fastest passenger-flying commercial aircraft, was to cut flight time significantly. A typical non-stop flight from London to New York is around eight hours, but the Concorde took only three hours. But at what cost?
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One of the reasons for the Concorde’s failure is its high fuel consumption. Along with this comes along the environmental impacts such as excessive carbon emission. While it was not too much of a concern back in the days, society now expects companies to have a robust ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) framework. To meet these requirements, companies are investing more in its R&D and the result is encouraging.
It is possible for a greener future in the aviation industry, and one of the steps to do so is encouraging the over to sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). Together with fuel companies like British Petroleum, aircraft manufacturers, including Bombardier have designed their latest models such that these jets are compatible with SAF. An impressive 80 per cent reduction in carbon emissions can be achieved if more jetliners make the switch.
Despite the reported benefits of using SAF, there are still the preconceived notions that sustainable products are purely functional. While that is the point of any sustainable product, or any product for that matter, the implications for SAF far outpace its functionality. It represents the new future of flying, where it is socially and environmentally responsible.
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The new Bombardier Global 8000 epitomises this newfound venture. When the jet becomes operational in 2025, it will become the fastest business jet with a top speed of Mach 0.94 and a nautical range of 8,000 miles.
A statement put out by Bombardier says, “the aircraft, accompanied by a NASA F/A-18 chase plane, [repeatedly] achieved speeds in excess of Mach 1.015, a key step in enabling a maximum Mach operating speed (MMO) of M0.94 and becoming the fastest business jet in the world and the fastest in civil aviation since the Concorde. During the demonstration flight, the aircraft also became the first Transport Category airplane to fly supersonic with sustainable aviation fuel.”
With such a revolutionary move, Bombardier cements itself at the forefront of the aviation industry and the best in class in terms of adhering to market expectations like fulfilling ESG demands.
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