Contrails from two aeroplanes in the sky


Civil aviation is a rapidly growing mode of transportation that is extremely tough to decarbonise. It has long time constants and the emissions produced occur at high altitude. This causes these emissions to be around twice as harmful compared to if they were released at ground level.

This talk will outline the long-term environmental challenges facing aviation and how the sector can move towards zero environmental impact. It will focus on:

  1. The fuel-energy system, where various alternative fuel options are being considered (including hydrogen and sustainable aviation fuels)
  2. Operational measures that can mitigate contrail warming from flight.
  3. A potential way to apply emissions control technology from ground transportation to aviation. This could reduce >90% of the air pollution impacts of aviation.

The seminar will conclude by preempting the noise challenge of future drone services, such as aerial package delivery, specifically referencing the prospects for “solid state” propulsion for drones.

About the Brahmal Institute Seminar Series

The Brahmal Vasudevan Institute for Sustainable Aviation Seminar Series  hosted by the Department of Aeronautics, is a series of talks by internationally renowned individuals covering a broad range of areas including aeronautics, technology development and policymaking.

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