BAe 146 to be used as E-Fan X demonstrator

Airbus E-Fan X demonstrator

The Airbus E-Fan X demonstrator will used a BAe 146 fitted with an electric fan (Airbus)

Airbus has announced that it is planning to modify a BAe 146 for use as its E-Fan X demonstrator. The announcement confirms earlier rumors. Under the project, which is being undertaken in partnership with Rolls-Royce and Siemens, the 146’s number three engine will be replaced by a 2-megawatt electric-driven fan supplied by Siemens. The fan will be fitted inside a standard 146 engine pod. Rolls-Royce will provide an AE2100 engine driving a 2.5-megawatt generator. It will be mounted in the rear cabin, with an air inlet behind the wing, and will supply 3,000 volts of DC power to the motor and battery. A battery sufficient to produce 2 megawatts of power for takeoff and cruise will be installed in the cargo hold. The modified 146 could fly in 2020. If tests prove successful, a second engine might also be replaced with another fan. Airbus’ ultimate aim is to develop a 50-100-seat hybrid-electric regional aircraft that could enter service by 2030-35.

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