SuperOx to develop ultra-light electric cables for Airbus Group future aircraft

SuperOx company led by investor Andrey Vavilov, has signed the agreement with the Russian branch of the research division of the aerospace engineering leader, Airbus Group Innovations. The work will help to develop a new type of ultra-light cable on the base of superconductors.

Modern transport systems tend to use more electric energy. Aircraft industry actively works in this direction. The use of electric power for flight should reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emission; decrease noise level and simultaneously increase machines reliability and maneuverability.

The onboard power of the medium-range airplane exceeds 10 MW. Today, the generation, transmission and conversion of such amount of electric power is not possible onboard because of the large weight of the necessary infrastructure – cables, generators and motors. Superconducting equipment has weight and dimensions, which is only a small fraction of those for conventional systems. This opens new prospects for electric engineering onboard of the aircraft. Thomson Reuters agency has identified an electric air transportation with the use of superconductors among 10 technologies of tomorrow that will be in use in 2025 [1].

Before the superconducting equipment will be widely used onboard of the electric aircraft, plenty of engineering tasks must be solved. There is a need to carry out the development and testing of the new cables, rotating machines and energy storage systems. This has to be done in accordance with strict standards of the aviation industry.

SuperOx project, created in 2006 by investor Andrey Vavilov, delivers 2G HTS wires to customers all around the world. Superconducting wire can be used in the production of power cables, systems for the contactless suspension and transport, energy storage and high-performance motors.

SuperOx starts 2015 with a new project that will include the design and tests of the first superconducting aircraft cable that will be able to transmit megawatt-range of power using low voltage AC current. The work will be carried out for Airbus Group Innovations, the corporate research and technology network of Airbus Group, with the participation of researchers from Russian Cable Research Institute (VNIIKP).