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Honeywell and Denso have signed a long-term agreement to develop and manufacture electric propulsion systems for aircraft, with an initial focus on air taxis and delivery vehicles for urban air mobility (UAM).
The formal alliance builds on an initial teaming agreement announced in 2019, leveraging Honeywell’s expertise in aviation and Denso’s experience as a high-volume supplier of motors, controllers, and other components for electric vehicles. The companies said they are in advanced discussions with current and prospective customers and intend to deliver flight test configurations of the electric propulsion systems within the next year.
“Honeywell technologies have helped power human flight for more than 100 years, and as electric propulsion for aircraft takes shape, Honeywell will be at the forefront with partners like Denso,” Honeywell’s Dave Marinick, president, Engines & Power Systems, stated in a press release. “Denso’s leadership in automotive technology combined with our experience in aerospace will help bring about cleaner and smarter ways for people to move throughout the world.”
The companies said their electric propulsion systems will “integrate seamlessly” with Honeywell’s other solutions for the UAM market, including fly-by-wire, avionics, and actuation systems. Honeywell products have been selected by customers including Pipistrel, for its Nuuva V300 cargo drone, and Vertical Aerospace, for its VA-X4 air taxi.
Denso and Honeywell both aim to be carbon neutral by 2035. According to Jiro Ebihara, a senior executive officer and head of the Electrification Systems Business Group at Denso Corp, “While we have committed to achieve a carbon-neutral society, we still need to reduce traffic and offer eco-friendly movement in population-dense areas. Working with Honeywell will help address both these issues and furthers our goal of creating mobility that is green and offers peace of mind.”