For the first time in the world, the British Skyborne will switch completely to electric aircraft, the company will buy a total of ten Bye Aerospace eFlyers, which will be charged with electricity from renewable sources, creating a “green” pilot academy. The UK company announced the switchover in late July, with plans to take over six two-seater eFlyer 2s and four four-seater eFlyer 4s as soon as they become available.
The family of aircraft is being developed specifically for training purposes by Colorado’s Bye Aerospace, and its flight characteristics and equipment have also been adapted accordingly in recent years. Since June 5 this year, smaller version 2 flight tests have been underway in the United States. It is estimated that five million tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year could be saved from the planet if electric aircraft were given a role in pilot training.
Lee Woodward, CEO of Skyborne Academy, highlighted in a statement that the move will trigger radical changes in the training of commercial pilots, and that environmental awareness, approaching carbon neutrality, is now an essential element of investing in new technologies. With the investment, Skyborne Academy will become a pioneer in electric aviation in its own country.
The company is also trying to take advantage of the downtime caused by the pandemic, as fewer new pilots will be needed due to air traffic, which is expected to remain lower for years, so the less tight training pace opens up space for integrating innovations in the longer term. The parties will also need this time, as they will even need to issue an eFlyer Part 23 Certificate of Airworthiness to the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and have it approved by the European Authority. It is planned that the first two-seater plane will be received by the British Academy in 2022 and its first four-seater companion in 2023.