IMDEA Materials Institute joins European project to make the dream of clean aviation a reality

IMDEA Materials is part of the multinational European consortium working to develop the next hybrid electric regional passenger aircraft with the aim of reducing emissions by up to 90%.

The ‘Hybrid-Electric Regional Architecture’ (HERA) project, led by worldwide Italian aerospace giant Leonardo, has a budget of €45,000,000 and involves nearly 50 research centres and companies throughout Europe.

The HERA aircraft, with a capacity of approximately 50-100 seats, will operate in regional and short-haul air mobility by the mid-2030s for typical distances of less than 500 km (interurban regional connections).

It will include hybrid electric propulsion based on batteries or fuel cells as energy sources supported by sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) or hydrogen combustion. In this way, it seeks to almost completely eliminate harmful CO2 emissions.  

The aircraft will be able to provide real profitable services, offering operators and passengers sustainable, safe, and fast connectivity with low greenhouse gas emissions.

Within the framework of the project, IMDEA Materials Institute will develop computational multiscale fatigue models for composite and metallic materials, including surrogate and simplified models.

IMDEA Materials’ participation will encompass three of the Institute’s research groups: the Structural Composite Materials group led by Prof. Carlos González, the Multiscale Simulation of Materials group led by Prof. Javier Segurado, and the Computational Mechanics of Solids group led by Prof. Ignacio Romero.

Of the total project budget, €35,000,000 will be provided by the European Union under Phase 2 of the Clean Aviation program as part of the Horizon Europe program.

Other Spanish members of the consortium include Airbus Defense and Space, AERTEC Solutions, the Technical University of Madrid, and Aernnova Aerospace.

You can read more about the HERA project here: