Bodø, Norway - Wideroe wants to electrify its fleet. To this end, the Norwegian regional carrier has launched a research program with the British engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce to develop an aircraft powered by an electric engine.
The program has been launched as part of the Widerøe's ambition to replace its turboprop fleet with new electric planes by 2030.
The airline currently operates 44 turboprop aircraft from De Havilland Dash-8 family and four Embraer E190-E2 jets.
The first phase of the two-year project covers operational studies and concept development.
Rolls-Royce will use its in-depth electrical and systems design expertise to help advise on all elements of the project. The initial phase, which involves operational studies and concept proofing, is already underway, with expert teams in Norway and the UK working closely together on a daily basis,
British engine manufacturer said in a statement.
At the beginning of this year, Norway's state-owned airport operator Avinor revealed plans to power all flights of up to 90 minutes with electricity by 2040.
The research program of Widoroe and Rolls-Royce is supported both by the Norwegian government and the state-owned Innovation Norway Development Bank.
Our major short runway network of local flights in the coastal and northern parts of the country is ideal for electrification, and our abundant access to clean electricity means this is an opportunity we cannot miss. We are determined to show the world that this is possible, and many will be surprised at how fast it will happen,
said Ola Elvestuen, climate and environment minister of Norway.