Airbus conducted its first long-haul flight demonstration to reduce CO2 emissions. The flight was carried out by two A350 aircraft from France to Canada with a separation of three kilometers, saving six tons of emissions.
The flight was completed thanks to the control systems developed by Airbus, positioning one of the aircraft as the “lead aircraft” and the second aircraft as “follower” safely in the ascending wake of the first, allowing it to reduce engine thrust and fuel consumption. A similar principle can be seen in large migratory birds, such as geese, which fly together in a distinct V-shaped formation.
“This demonstration flight is a concrete example of our commitment to make our decarbonization roadmap a reality. It also talks about how collaboration across the industry will be key to making it happen, ”said Sabine Klauke, Airbus Chief Technical Officer.
Ultimately, this project would significantly improve the performance of commercial aircraft, thus contributing to the reduction of carbon emissions once it becomes a certified project.