EasyJet to develop electric planes by 2030 for London to Amsterdam flights


EasyJet has revealed it is set to develop new electric planes for use on short-haul routes in the next 10 years.

The new aircraft – set to be rolled out by 2030 – will be powered by batteries instead of being dependent on jet fuel.

The electric planes will be quieter, better for the environment and cheaper for airline companies to buy and operate. The budget airline’s bosses have said that electric flying is “becoming a reality.”

Europe’s second busiest route London to Amsterdam will most likely benefit from the new fleet of high-tech aircraft.

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EasyJet has partnered with a US start-up company, Wright Electric, for the “exciting” venture.

Together, a battery-propelled aircraft will be developed to cover flights under two hours by 2027.

According to easyJet, Wright Electric has commenced work on an electric engine that will power a nine-seater aircraft.

Their partner Axter Aerospace already has a two-seater aircraft flying, and a larger aircraft is expected to start flying in 2019.

The prototype propulsion system for this nine-seater plane is four times more powerful than the system installed on the two-seat aircraft.

Wright Electric has filed a patent for a motor that will be used in this larger aircraft.

EasyJet to develop electric planes by 2030 for London short-haul flights (Image: easyJet/Getty Images)

“This exciting development suggests that the transition towards an all-electric commercial passenger jet capable of flying passengers across easyJet’s UK and European network is in sight,” said easyJet in a statement.

“London – Amsterdam is Europe’s second busiest route with a strong demand for day return trips, potentially making it an ideal route for all electric plane flying, or what easyJet is calling an electric ‘flyway.’”

The electric plane will offer significant reductions in noise and carbon emissions.

Wright Electric predicts electric planes will be up to 50 per cent quieter and 10 per cent cheaper than traditional aircraft for airlines to buy and operate.

“We know it is important to our customers that we operate sustainably and with the introduction of A320neos, we can already provide a 15 per cent reduction in carbon emissions and 50 per cent less noise footprint, putting us amongst the best-ranking airlines in Europe,” said Johan Lundgren, CEO of easyJet.

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EasyJet: The budget airline’s bosses have said that electric flying is “becoming a reality” (Image: easyJet)

EasyJet: Planes will not be “exclusively dependent on jet fuel” but rather be powered by batteries (Image: easyJet)

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“Looking forward, the technological advancements in electric flying are truly exciting and it is moving fast.

“From the two-seater aircraft, which is already flying, to the nine-seater which will fly next year, electric flying is becoming a reality and we can now foresee a future that is not exclusively dependent on jet fuel.

“The target range of the electric plane is around 500 kilometres which, within our current route portfolio, would mean a route like Amsterdam to London could become the first electric ‘flyway’”

Jeffrey Engler, CEO of Wright Electric, added: “We are excited about what the next year holds. easyJet has been a fantastic partner, and we look forward to helping introduce low-emissions low-noise aviation to Europe.”

Earlier this year Emirates revealed it will be rolling out planes without windows, instead replacing them with virtual windows.

The new design will make the plane lighter, cut fuel costs and make the aircraft safer in the event of an emergency landing.

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