DHL Express trusts Eviation to help it achieve its environmental goals. The logistics company has ordered 12 fully electric Alice eCargo planes from Eviation in its freight transport version.
While the device is still in development and is expected to make its first flight this year, DHL Express expects deliveries starting in 2024. From there, the German company wants to build a short-haul express freight network based on electric aviation.
Eviation’s Alice is the world’s leading fully electric aircraft, which enables airlines – both cargo and passenger – to operate a zero-emission fleet. It can be flown by a single pilot and will carry 1,200 kilograms (2,600 lbs). It offers a maximum range of up to 440 nautical miles (815 km) from a massive 820-kWh battery pack and a cruise speed of 253 mph (407 km/h) from the three variable-pitch pusher props. The device also promises that half an hour of charging will be enough to ensure an hour of flight time, which DHL is counting on to keep its operations efficient.
Alice will operate in all environments currently serviced by piston and turbine aircraft. Its advanced electric motors have fewer moving parts to increase reliability and reduce maintenance costs. The aircraft’s operating software constantly monitors flight performance to ensure optimal efficiency.
Eviation expects to deliver the Alice electric aircraft to DHL Express in 2024, with DHL revealing that it’s planning to set up an unparalleled electric Express network and make a pioneering step into a sustainable aviation future.
“With Alice’s range and capacity, this is a fantastic sustainable solution for our global network,” says Travis Cobb, EVP Global Network Operations and Aviation for DHL Express. “Our aspiration is to make a substantial contribution in reducing our carbon footprint, and these advancements in fleet and technology will go a long way in achieving further carbon reductions. For our customers and us, this is a very important step in our decarbonization journey and a step forward for the aviation industry as a whole.“
DHL Group is aiming for zero-emissions operations by 2050 and is investing a total of €7 billion by 2030 in measures to reduce its CO2 emissions. The funds will go in particular towards electrification of the last-mile delivery fleet, sustainable aviation fuels, and climate-neutral buildings.