Bombardier says it is partnering with UVic as part of a pan-Canadian sustainability-focused research project.
According to the aircraft manufacturer, it is the first academic collaboration for its EcoJet research project. They are partnering with UVic’s Centre for Aerospace Research to explore a blended wing bodied aircraft and hope to create new technologies to reduce business jet emissions by 50 per cent.
The aircraft design takes the fuselage and tries to blend its junction with the wing, according to a Bombardier YouTube video posted last year. Bombardier says this reduces drag and with it, fuel consumption, lowering the carbon emissions.
They add they hope to add hybrid technology to further lower the emissions. Bombardier says they start with building smaller drones for testing.
They say the research project started around 15 years ago and in 2017, they started testing with eight-foot-span prototypes. They are now wanting to create a flight vehicle more than twice as large.
Bombardier says they will be partnering with multiple universities for the project. UVic Centre for Aerospace Research director and professor Afzal Suleman says it is the most significant partnership in its history.
“Through this collaboration, our students and researchers are gaining critical real-world skills while helping to push forward the frontiers of sustainability and redefining the boundaries of what is possible for the future of the global aviation industry,” said Suleman.
Bombardier adds that collaborative work in designing the blended wing bodied aircraft involves multidisciplinary teams. UVic’s president Dr. Kevin Hall adds they are “thrilled” to contribute to Bombardier.
“This collaboration marks a significant step forward in our commitment to sustainability, a greener future for the aviation industry,” said Hall.
“The development of cutting-edge technologies that advance the frontiers of science and engineering right here in B.C. and throughout Canada.”