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Work on development of domestic hybrid power plants goes on

5 February 2020

The work on the creation of domestic hybrid power plants (PP) for aviation has received a new impetus. According to the results of a competitive tender of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, the Central Institute of Aviation Motors (CIAM, a part of the ‘Zhukovsky Institute’ National Research Center) became the lead contractor for the “Electrolet SU-2020” R&D work.

The Electrolet SU-2020 [SU stands for PP] research project is designed for three years and is a continuation of the Electrolet SU research project, which was successfully completed in 2019 by the ground tests of a hybrid PP demonstrator developed at CIAM.

Research on hybrid and electrical PP is one of the aviation technology trends which can significantly affect the future aircraft design.

The efforts of almost all the leading aerospace scientific and industrial centers worldwide are directed toward research and development of hybrid or electric PPs. In the future, the electric PPs will significantly reduce fuel consumption and harmful emissions.

The level of domestic technologies in this area corresponds to, and in some areas exceeds, the global level. In particular, state-of-the-art 2nd generation high temperature superconducting (HTS) tapes are produced in Russia.

A number of works have been completed to create demonstrators, including the world's first 500 kW electric HTS motor.

“There is every reason to believe that only such a technology will allow in the future to create electric motors and generators with a capacity of 10-20 megawatts for hybrid power plants for short- and medium-haul aircraft,” explains the Director General of CIAM Mikhail Gordin. “As part of the new research, we will finalize the demonstrator of the hybrid power plant, taking into account the data obtained during its ground tests, and its flight testing.”

The ‘Zhukovsky Institute’ National Research Center will coordinate the work, SuperOx, SibNIA named after S. A. Chaplygin, MAI, USATU, and other organizations will participate in the project.