New airplane engine prototype could reduce flight emissions by 20 per cent or more
Mobility & Transport
The design features lightweight, uncovered blades that also reduce fuel use
Spotted: As part of CFM International’s dedication to achieving a carbon-neutral future for the aviation industry, the company has introduced its Open Rotor airplane engine. The prototype’s carbon fibre composite fan blades help reduce weight and noise, and with no engine cover, more of the blades’ surface area is exposed to the air.
Initial tests show propulsion is at nearly the same level as currently in-use engines provide, but without the pollution. First designs had comparable levels of noise, and the latest iterations appear already to be even quieter. With potential for double-digit reductions in both emissions and fuel consumption, the new engines could move the industry closer to a more sustainable future.
CFM International is a partnership between the United States’ GE Aviation division of General Electric and the Safran Aircraft Engines division of Safran of France. As exciting as the new development is, the teams say that at least a decade of further research and development is required before the design will be ready for commercial use.
Another method the airline industry is exploring for increasing sustainability is in finding alternative power sources. Springwise has spotted plastics and carbon emissions being recycled into new types of jet fuel.
Written by: Keely Khoury
Explore more: Mobility & Transport Innovations | Sustainability Innovations
23rd June 2021