22 September 2020, Toulouse, FRANCE
Liebherr-Aerospace announced that the supersonic aircraft company Aerion Supersonic, based in Reno, Nevada (USA) and Melbourne, Florida (USA), has commissioned Liebherr-Aerospace Toulouse SAS, Toulouse (France), Liebherr’s center of excellence for air management systems, for the development of the integrated air management system for the AS2 supersonic business jet.
Aerion and Liebherr first began formal collaboration mid-2019, working on preliminary designs of the AS2’s integrated air management system. Following the initial technical discussions, Liebherr-Aerospace and Aerion converged on a next generation electrical pack with an integrated air management system.
The electrical air-conditioning pack, under development for several years at Liebherr-Aerospace, is a major step towards greener aircraft operation. In lieu of the traditional methods of utilizing bleed air from the aircraft’s engines, the innovative design selected by Aerion draws ambient air from an inlet located on the leading edge of the wing strake, enabling electrically powered compression. Fuel consumption due to the air-conditioning packs will thus be considerably reduced compared to current bleed air systems.
“Developing an air management system, which is to perform at supersonic speed comes with many challenges that we intend to work through with the Aerion team. Liebherr has a decades long experience on air and thermal management systems for both commercial and military platforms, that we can contribute for the benefit of the AS2”, explained Francis Carla, Chief Technology Officer of Liebherr-Aerospace & Transportation SAS.
“We are seeking innovative, technology-led partners at the top of their fields who are passionate about accelerating the evolution of human mobility while at the same time being kind to our planet. I am confident that in Liebherr-Aerospace we have found such a partner who will support bringing the AS2 to production,” said Tom Vice, Aerion’s Chairman, President & CEO.
Aerion’s pursuit of faster point-to-point travel begins with the launch of the AS2 supersonic business jet that will commence production in 2023. Designed to be inherently environmentally responsible from first flight, the AS2 is the first supersonic aircraft designed with the ability to accept 100% synthetic fuel and reach supersonic speeds without the need for an afterburner.
The AS2 will be the first aircraft to be assembled at Aerion’s new global headquarters called “Aerion Park” in Melbourne, Florida (USA). The state-of-the-art development, powered by clean energy, will incorporate headquarters operations plus an integrated campus for research, design, build and support of the company’s new supersonic aircraft. Manufacturing of the AS2 is scheduled to commence in 2023.
Source and photo: Aerion