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Airbus will assess how superconductivity contributes to the decarbonization of aviation

Airbus UpNext, a wholly owned subsidiary of Airbus, and CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics, are launching a project to assess how superconductivity can contribute to the decarbonization of future aircraft systems. The Superconductive Demonstrator for Aviation with Low Emissions (SCALE) aims to promote the adaptation and adoption of superconducting technologies in airborne electrical distribution systems. “In its research, CERN pushes the boundaries of science and engineering and partners with industry to enable innovation, with a positive environmental impact”, said Raphael Bello, Director of Finance and Human Resources at CERN. “Our technologies have the potential to be adapted to the needs of future transport and clean mobility solutions, as demonstrated by this agreement with Airbus. This partnership is just a first step on our journey with the European leader in aviation, and shows how much we value industry excellence in our Member States”. “Our role at Airbus UpNext is to explore the full potential of technologies applied to future aircraft and to partner with world leaders to prepare for that future. Partnering with a leading research institute like CERN, which has brought the world some of the most important discoveries in fundamental physics, will help push the boundaries of clean aerospace research as we work to make sustainable aviation a reality”, said Sandra Bour-Schaeffer, CEO of Airbus UpNext. “We are already developing a superconductivity demonstrator called ASCEND (Advanced superconducting and Cryogenic Experimental powertrain Demonstrator) to study the feasibility of this technology for electric and hybrid aircraft. Combining the knowledge gained from our demonstrator and CERN’s unique capabilities in the field of superconductors creates a natural partnership”, she continued. The SCALE demonstrator combines CERN’s expertise in superconducting technologies with Airbus UpNext’s capabilities in innovative aircraft design and manufacturing. First results are expected by the end of 2023. The initiatives aim to develop and test under laboratory conditions, an optimized generic superconducting cryogenic powertrain (~500kW) by the end of 2025. SCALE will be designed, built, and tested by CERN using Airbus UpNext specifications and CERN technology. The demonstrator consists of a DC link (cable and cryostat) with two current leads. The cooling system is based on gaseous helium. – https://aeroin.net/airbus-vai-avaliar-como-a-supercondutividade-contribui-para-a-descarbonizacao-da-aviacao/