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Nice one, Kemble: Major order takes off for ZeroAvia

Anglo-American aviation disruptor and clean flight expert ZeroAvia has just signed off a landmark deal with American Airlines Group (AAG) which will see 100 of the firm's groundbreaking hydrogen-electric engines powering the airliner's Bombardier fleet.

The deal, signed in Fort Worth, Texas, and Everett, Washington, will be seen as a coup back in Kemble, Gloucestershire, where ZeroAvia technicians put in the long hours for R&D to make the futuristic technology viable.

AAG has entered into a conditional purchase agreement for 100 hydrogen-electric engines earmarked for regional jet aircraft that emit only water vapour and achieve near-zero inflight emissions.

In addition, AAG is increasing its investment in ZeroAvia. On the heels of a memorandum of understanding announced in 2022 which led to an initial investment from AAG, the flight giant is also now participating in the company's Series C financing round, a spokesman explained.

Val Miftakhov, ZeroAvia founder and CEO, said: "In signing this purchase agreement and furthering its investment, American [Airlines] is supporting our mission of innovation for clean aircraft propulsion and it is a good signal that ZeroAvia is delivering on our technology roadmap.

"The solutions that can serve the largest airlines are within reach, and the clean future of flight is coming."

Robert Isom, CEO of AAG, added: "Advancing the transition of commercial aviation to a low-carbon future requires investments in promising technologies, including alternate forms of propulsion.

"This announcement will help accelerate the development of technologies needed to power our industry and uphold our commitment to make American [Airlines] a sustainable airline so we can continue to deliver for customers for decades to come."

In detail, ZeroAvia is flight testing a prototype for a 20-seat plane and designing an engine for larger aircraft, such as the Bombardier CRJ700, which AA operates on certain regional routes.

The investment and conditional commitment to purchase novel engine technology contributes, flight operator says, to AA's "aggressive goal to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050". In recent years, AA has undertaken an amibitious fleet renewal effort which currently gives the operator the youngest mainline fleet of any major U.S. network carrier.

A spokesman for AAG added: "American has made industry-leading investments in sustainability, including finalizing an offtake agreement with Infinium, a producer of next-generation low-carbon sustainable aviation fuel, and becoming the first customer of Graphyte's innovative and permanent carbon removal process.

"These investments are intended to meaningfully contribute to the world's largest airline's aggressive goal to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050."

● The American Airlines Group is currently ranked as the world's biggest airline on the basis of passengers carried and employees. It was formed in 2013 through the merger of AMR Corporation (the parent company of American Airlines) and US Airways Group, the parent company of US Airways.

Punchline-Gloucester.com says: "We hear a lot of conspiracy theories about contrails in the sky, but guess what, those lines on the horizon are set to be water vapour as we move towards a future of guilt-free flight. And Gloucestershire, as we have also seen through Dale Vince's work with Ecojet in partnership with ZeroAvia, is playing a major part in making this happen. Well done, ZeroAvia on having the vision and application to keep moving aviation forward to this green goal we all need for sustainable business."

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