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Bauhaus Luftfahrt discusses climate impact of aviation

Bauhaus Luftfahrt recently held its fourth scientific symposium on the long-term development of aviation. Around 200 participants from 17 countries accepted the invitation of the renowned aviation think tank to attend the Ludwig Boelkow Campus near Munich. In IABG’s atrium, host and IABG Managing Director Prof. Dr. Rudolf F. Schwarz welcomed the circle of renowned experts from industry, politics, and research: “We are delighted to be hosting this year’s aviation symposium as well. Since its foundation, Bauhaus Luftfahrt has developed into one of the most important institutions in the field of aviation research. It has become a trademark with enormous appeal worldwide, a sought-after contact whose research results enjoy the highest esteem in science, industry, and politics.“

This year’s Bauhaus Luftfahrt Symposium was devoted to the topic “Aviation targets beyond Flightpath 2050“. During the plenary session on the first day, five top-class speakers from various industries and institutions (including the German Aerospace Center, Airbus Chief Technology Office, Climeworks – CO2 capture from the air) presented radical technologies and concepts with which the aviation of the future can actively and positively impact climate change. Even though the ambitious goals of the Flightpath 2050 have widely stimulated research and development activities in all technology areas in recent years, no single technological solution has yet emerged that would lead to the achievement of the European environmental targets in aviation. A successful strategy beyond 2050 therefore urgently requires a holistic view of economic, regulatory, operational, and technological measures. In the following panel discussion, a fruitful dialogue arose from the highly regarded presentations of the speakers with the experts of Bauhaus Luftfahrt, its international industrial partners, representatives of airlines, regulatory bodies, and companies as well as high-ranking researchers from all scientific fields in the aerospace sector.

The evening lecture by Prof. Dr. Mirko Hornung, Executive Director Research and Technology at Bauhaus Luftfahrt, also dealt with the latest technological findings, views, and opinions. In a current research project, the think tank is investigating in an interdisciplinary manner how long-haul flights can be optimised ecologically, economically, and also in terms of flight comfort. First results and visualisations of the study could already be presented to the conference participants.

On the second day of the symposium, the guests had the opportunity to choose between four interesting sessions in the morning and afternoon. Session 1 dealt with needs and measures to mitigate the climate impact of aviation. Session 2 considered the potential of novel digital technologies, the advance of intelligent decision making, and new ways of digital collaboration. Breakthroughs in technological developments, such as power electronics, and the realisation of new configurations were central topics in session 3. And in session 4, technology bricks for radical propulsion systems in aviation were outlined and discussed.

At the end of the two-day expert forum, Bauhaus Luftfahrt Executive Director Mirko Hornung drew a thoroughly positive balance: “In addition to radical technological concepts, solutions for ecologically sustainable aviation were discussed intensively in the dialogue between the experts and participants of the symposium.“ The Bauhaus Luftfahrt Symposium takes place every two years on the Ludwig Boelkow Campus.

Symposium 2019

Discussed the climate impacts of aviation (from left to right): Prof. Dr. Mirko Hornung (Bauhaus Luftfahrt), Glenn Llewellyn (Airbus), Prof. Dr. Robert Sausen (German Aerospace Center), Dr. Chris Malins (Cerulogy), Dr. Andreas Sizmann (Bauhaus Luftfahrt), and Dominique Kronenberg (Climeworks).
May 9th, 2019