Airbus Helicopters today unveiled ‘PioneerLab,’ its new twin-engine hybrid technology demonstrator that also includes re-cyclable material to reduce carbon footprint.
The PioneerLab aims to demonstrate a fuel reduction of up to 30% compared to a conventional H145, thanks to a hybrid electric propulsion system and aerodynamic improvements.
Aboard the demonstrator, Airbus Helicopters will also flight-test structural components made from bio-based and recycled materials, which aim to reduce the environmental footprint across the entire aircraft life cycle.
The company intends to produce the new parts using processes that reduce material and energy consumption and improve recyclability. Further research activities will include the integration of the latest digital technologies into the aircraft's flight control system and associated sensors to increase autonomy and safety during critical flight phases such as take-off and landing.
"With PioneerLab, we continue our ambitious strategy to test and mature new technologies on board our helicopter demonstrators," said Tomasz Krysinski, Head of Research and Innovation Programmes at Airbus Helicopters. "PioneerLab, which is based in Germany at our Donauwörth site, will be our platform to test technologies specifically dedicated to twin-engine helicopters."