Pulse news magazine

Volume 27, November 2019

The new airborne commute

BAE Systems is ready to revolutionize the air transit market with solutions for hybrid and all electric powered aircraft.

It's rush hour when you hop into your Uber for the airport. Your driver takes you to an aerial rideshare vertiport, where you board your Uber aircraft that takes you to your destination.

In doing so, you eliminated sitting in heavy traffic. This is what the future of urban and regional air transportation looks like.

With hybrid electric and all electric powered aircraft to reduce operational costs, emissions, and noise, that scenario will be accessible to you as early as 2025. Aircraft operators are already identifying partners for prototype and demonstration aircraft to replace conventional aircraft systems with electrical components. The critical technologies for safe, successful, and cost-effective operation of these platforms are energy management systems and integrated control systems – areas were BAE Systems already excels.

To meet our customers' needs, we are integrating more than four decades of experience in controls, energy, and power and propulsion technologies to focus on three critical enabling technologies: energy systems, control systems, and power conversion. Our new technologies will be modular, scalable, and adaptable with applications in a variety of markets, including regional jet and urban air mobility (UAM).

"We are discussing opportunities with several original equipment manufacturers related to flight controls and energy management systems for both electric and hybrid electric aircraft," said Dr. Ehtisham Siddiqui, vice president and general manager of the Controls and Avionics Solutions business area. "We're building on decades of experience in high-integrity controls and power management systems to support the air transport and urban mobility segments. I have no doubt that we will be commuting on a UAM aircraft in the near future, be it to transfer from Gatwick to Heathrow, or from Manhattan to JFK."

We are leveraging our success in battery management over the last 20 years, combining it with our industry knowledge and expertise in controls and avionics, and applying it to a new market application.

We expect to have our first products available in late 2020 to early 2021. BAE Systems is ready to revolutionize the air transit market with solutions for hybrid and all electric powered aircraft.

By Carrie Connors, Communications, Endicott, New York