Remond, Wash.-based magniX, a provider of electric propulsion systems for aircraft, has announced a new partnership with Harbour Air, which calls itself North America’s largest seaplane airline.
The partners plan to transform Harbour Air seaplanes into an all-electric commercial fleet, powered by the magni500, a 750-horsepower, all-electric motor.
Operating 12 routes between hubs such as Seattle and Vancouver and across the Pacific Northwest, Harbour Air touts more than 500,000 passengers on 30,000 commercial flights each year.
“Harbour Air first demonstrated its commitment to sustainability by becoming the first fully carbon-neutral airline in North America in 2007, through the purchase of carbon offsets,” states Greg McDougall, founder and CEO of Harbour Air. “Through our commitment to making a positive impact on people’s lives, the communities where we operate and the environment, we are once again pushing the boundaries of aviation by becoming the first commercial aircraft to be powered by electric propulsion. We are excited to bring commercial electric aviation to the Pacific Northwest, turning our seaplanes into ePlanes.”
By modifying existing Harbour Air planes with all-electric magniX propulsion systems, the partnership will create the world’s first completely electric commercial seaplane fleet, the companies claim. A Harbour Air ePlane will have zero reliance on fossil fuels and will produce zero emissions.
“In 2018, 75 percent of worldwide airline flights were 1,000 miles or less in range. With magniX’s new propulsion systems, coupled with emerging battery capabilities, we see tremendous potential for electric aviation to transform this heavily trafficked ‘middle mile’ range,” says Roei Ganzarski, CEO of magniX. “We’re excited to partner with Harbour Air, a forward-thinking, like-minded company that is dedicated to bringing environmentally conscious, cost-effective air-transport solutions to the West Coast of North America. This partnership will set the standard for the future of commercial aviation operators.”
The first aircraft to be converted will be the DHC-2 de Havilland Beaver, a six-passenger commercial aircraft used across Harbour Air’s route network. Harbour Air and magniX expect to conduct first flight tests of the all-electric aircraft in late 2019.