As the aerospace industry pushes on relentlessly towards a carbon zero future, there is a lot of pressure on the technology providers. MTU Aero Engines‘ head of technology Dr Claus Riegler explains how his company is developing systems to reach those net zero goals.
“We have a huge challenge ahead of us, both societally and politically but also from an industrial perspective and we are very actively working on those technologies to get us forward in terms of climate reduction from commercial aviation,” he commented.
At MTU, the company has several ideas to address carbon neutral flying including a flying fuel cell concept which it is merging into its technology roadmap, which is also attracting new talent. However, the company also needs to address supply chain issues if it is going to achieve its goals.
“We have a significant problem in ramping up the supply chain – after the Covid crisis, everybody is struggling to get raw materials and get the parts in hand. We are addressing that by double sourcing for example, we are managing the supply chain and we have very good relationship with our supply chain so we are on a good track but there is still some time to go before we are recovered for Covid,” Riegler said. “On the resource side we are actually very successful. We have a concept which we call centre of competencies where we draw young talent rom universities, from academia, and we are quite successful in hiring new talent.”
When it comes to the use of artificial intelligence, MTU sees it as a positive development. “Leveraging that technology in terms of handling large quantities of data, especially data where you don’t have a direct simulation-based relationship between input and output, you have a huge chance to better understand, to better manage the data, to turn big data into smart data to learn from it and benefit from it,” he added.