Image: RAF

Two brand new experimental aircraft with advanced technologies will be created by the Royal Air Force (RAF) in the latest step towards a sustainable aviation future.

The commencement of Project Monet, a joint initiative between the Rapid Capabilities Office (RCO) and industry, will see the development of two experimental flying test aircraft to showcase the capabilities and potential of a range of sustainable technologies.

Using the aircraft as the testing focus, Project Monet will draw together expertise from across the RAF and industry to evaluate how technologies can meet key military requirements and the whole-life environmental impact of operating such a fleet of aircraft.

The range of sustainable aviation technologies include the potential for all-electric battery power, synthetic fuelled internal combustion engines, hydrogen cell and hybrid.

Group Captain Hackett, Military Head of Flight Test on Team Tempest said: “Monet will be an exciting journey into the future of sustainable flight for the RAF. We will develop and understand the technologies to enable future military aircrew and air cadets to begin their journey into aviation, and yet not adversely impact the world we all share, I can’t think of a better motivator to push us all onto success.”

The two-year partnership with Babcock and Swift Aircraft using light training aircraft will also deliver additional benefit by providing a means to evaluate a broader range of factors including logistics, ground operations, human factors, and certification. In so doing, the work will provide important information which can be readily transferred to other environmentally conscious capability projects and developments.

Jon Russell, Babcock UK Aviation Engineering Director said: “Sustainability is an increasingly important factor for the aviation industry and an integral part of our strategy to support our customers. By working with the Rapid Capabilities Office, we will be advancing the technology that can be used to address environmental challenges, as well supporting the RAF’s goal to be net zero by 2040.”

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