Wednesday, 20 February 2019

Air France is switching to electrical power for its airport ramp vehicles.

There is a major development happening on the airport ramps at a number of airports,  not least in France as flag carrier Air France is moving forward with its responsibilities towards sustainable development with electric vehicles. 

The firm says that as part of its commitment and in line with the French Government's announcement of its support for the electric battery sector, Air France is gradually starting to replace the diesel engines in the conveyor belt vehicles used for loading and unloading baggage on aircraft by replacing them with an electric drive made from recycled products.

To develop this collaborative project, Air France has chosen to team up with CarWatt, a French start-up that retrieves used lithium-ion batteries from individual electric vehicles and recycles them to give them a new life.

The first operational prototype has just gone into service at Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport and the conversion of 10 additional belt vehicles is under consideration.

There are several benefits of this conversion:

- Support the energy transition by reducing CO2 emissions by 3 tons per year, limiting fine particle emissions and reducing noise levels at the airport,
- Improve operational performance by improving safety during aircraft approach,
- Ensure an improved economic performance by reducing planned obsolescence by extending the life of these vehicles and limiting maintenance costs.