Otto Aviation, which is developing a six-seat, aero-diesel powered private aircraft, known as the Celera 500L, announced yesterday during ICAO’s Green Innovations webcast that it will also create a zero-emissions version of the high-efficiency aircraft. The company expects the initial conventionally-powered version of the aircraft—which features a portly, but laminar-flow friendly fuselage—to enter service in 2025.
“We’re pleased to announce the development of a zero-emissions version of the aircraft by 2027, using either battery-electric or hydrogen power,” said David Bogue, the airframer’s chief technology officer, adding it is designing the single-engine pusher, which is powered by a 550-hp RED A03 diesel engine, with the ability to retrofit to a zero-emissions powertrain. “We’re designing the baseline aircraft to be compatible with either until the combination of performance and infrastructure clarifies which is preferable.”
While current battery technology is not yet where it needs to be to meet the company’s needs, “We’re optimistic that improvements to specific energy, cycles and charge rates would enable battery power on future aircraft, especially in the long term,” said Bogue.
The company noted it has achieved more than 30 test flights on the aircraft, which it claims will have a maximum cruise speed of 400 knots and a range exceeding 3,900 nm while offering a stand-up cabin and fuel economy of 16 to 22 nm per gallon.