DALLAS – Spain’s Air Nostrum Group has confirmed that it will double its commitment for Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV) Airlander from ten to 20 aircraft.
The group, parent of Iberia (IB) franchise partner Air Nostrum (YW) and owner of Hibernian Airlines in Ireland and Mel Air in Malta, initially reserved ten examples of the hybrid airship in June 2022. It has also become the first commercial airline partner in the Airlander 50 Development Partner Programme.
HAV hopes to have the Airlander in service in the next five years and produce up to ten airframes annually by 2030. Potential routes earmarked for the type within the group include the Maltese island of Gozo, plus Sciliy, Tunisia, Libya and across Spain.
Tom Grundy, chief executive at Bedford-based Hybrid Air Vehicles, said, “Our growing partnership with Air Nostrum Group continues to demonstrate leadership towards the future of flight, and revolutionising how we fly.
“Airlander is designed to deliver a better future for commercially appealing and truly sustainable aviation services, by enabling new transport services and better growth options for our customers. Airlander 10 will make this possible by 2027, and Airlander 50 will build on it.
“We’re so pleased to have doubled Air Nostrum’s reservation to 20 aircraft, and to have its backing for our journey and support for our Airlander 50 Development Programme.”
Meanwhile, Miguel Ángel Falcón, chairman of Mel Air and vice president of Air Nostrum, added: “There are many factors that motivate us in flying Airlander, including a very low fuel consumption, bringing great ecological and economic benefits; the high operational versatility of being able to take-off and land on land and water; the family concept offering from 10 to 50 tonnes of payload starting with 100 passengers on the Airlander 10, all in an environment of great passenger comfort.
“These are just some critical factors that make the Airlander an excellent aircraft for regional flights.”
Featured Image: Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV).