Sweden’s Heart Aerospace is to work with BAE Systems to define the battery system required for its ES-30 hybrid-electric aircraft.
Development work will be carried out at BAE’s site in Endicott, New York.
“BAE Systems’ extensive experience in developing batteries for heavy-duty ground applications, and their experience in developing safety-critical control systems for aerospace, make them an ideal partner in this important next step for the ES-30 and for the aviation industry,” states Sofia Graflund, chief operating officer at Heart Aerospace.
“We look forward to decarbonising air travel together.”
Although the agreement with BAE is not a production contract, Heart says the aim is to reach “a longer-term framework agreement”.
Meanwhile, Heart is “in dialogue” with several cell providers as it works to nail down the rest of the electrical system for the ES-30. That is likely to include Swedish firm Northvolt, whose chief executive Peter Carlsson is an advisor to Heart.
Heart has also yet to reveal the supplier for the ES-30’s four 700kW-class electric motors or turbogenerators.
First flight of the ES-30 is set for 2026 and service entry foreseen in 2028. With 30 passengers on board, Heart claims an all-electric range of 108nm (200km) or 215nm using reserve power from two turbogenerators; flights of up to 430nm will be possible if just 25 passengers are carried, it adds.
The 5t of batteries will be housed in a special compartment located below the fuselage.