To meet the goal of a carbon neutral growth of commercial aviation, the top level objective of IMOTHEP is to achieve a key step in assessing the potential offered by hybrid electric propulsion (HEP) and, ultimately, to build the corresponding aviation sector-wide roadmap for the maturation of the technology.
The core of IMOTHEP is an integrated end-to-end investigation of hybrid-electric power trains for commercial aircraft, performed in close connexion with the propulsion system and aircraft architecture. Aircraft configurations will be selected based on their potential for fuel burn reduction and their representativeness of a variety of credible concepts, with a focus on regional and short-to-medium range missions. From the preliminary design of aircraft, target specifications will be defined for the architecture and components of the hybrid propulsion chain. Technological solutions and associated models will then be investigated with a twenty year timeframe perspective.
In order to identify key technological enablers and technology gaps, the integrated performance of the electric components and power chain will be synthesized by assessing the fuel burn of the selected aircraft configurations, compared to conventional technologies extrapolated to 2035.
The project will also address the infrastructures and tools required for HEP development, as well as the need for technology demonstrations or regulatory evolutions. Eventually, all these elements will feed the research and technology roadmap of HEP, which will constitute the final synthesis of the project.
To achieve these ambitious goals, the four-year project is supported by 7 R&D institutes, 11 industries (from aviation and electric systems), a service SME and 7 universities from 9 EU countries, plus 6 RTD organisations from Canada and Russia. The requested EU grant is 10 392 845 Euros.