Robotics & Automation News

Market trends and business perspectives

Denso and Honeywell to develop electric engine for Lilium Jet

Denso and Honeywell Aerospace are co-developing an electric motor for the Lilium Jet.

This is the first product developed by Honeywell and Denso since formalizing their alliance, and it marks Denso’s entry into the aerospace market. The two companies will work with Lilium, developer of the first all-electric vertical take-off and landing (“eVTOL”) jet, to integrate the e-motor into Lilium’s aircraft engines.

Electric aircraft are not only quiet and comfortable, but are also more sustainable as they do not emit CO2. As mobility becomes increasingly diversified, air mobility offers potential solutions to prominent transportation issues, such as traffic congestion in urban centers, CO2 emissions and transportation access in less populated areas.

Established in 2015, Lilium is creating a sustainable and accessible mode of high-speed, regional transportation for people and goods. Lilium has designed, built and tested technology demonstrators and invited the world to watch as they pioneer the next phase of flight.

The e-motor for the Lilium Jet consists of a rotor and stator, weighing approximately 4 kg and having an output of 100 kW. The rotor and stator are uniquely designed to meet the small size and low weight necessary to achieve Lilium’s performance goals.

Prototype rotor

This proprietary, high-performance system, on which the Lilium, Honeywell and Denso teams have already been working for nearly two years, brings exceptional performance and reliability with zero operating emissions typically associated with commercial jet engines.

Denso and Honeywell began joint research in 2019 and signed an alliance agreement in early 2021 to design, develop, produce and sell electric propulsion system products for electric and hybrid-electric aircraft.

Stéphane Fymat, vice president and general manager of Urban Air Mobility, Honeywell Aerospace, says: “Honeywell has been at the forefront of innovation in aviation for a century, and we are proud to closely collaborate with Denso and help usher in the age of electric flight.

“Lilium’s innovation, combined with our experience in aerospace, will help to bring about cleaner, more sustainable ways for people to travel for centuries to come.”

Prototype strator

Jiro Ebihara, senior executive officer and head of the Electrification Systems Business Group at Denso, says: “We’re honored to help electrify air travel with Honeywell and Lilium.

“The e-motor co-development solidifies Denso’s successful entry into the aerospace industry, giving us the opportunity to increase vehicle electrification not only on land, but also in the sky. This supports our efforts to create a more efficient and sustainable future.”

Yves Yemsi, chief operating officer of Lilium, says: “Lilium’s Procurement strategy is to engage with the technology providers with the most suitable expertise.

“We are already making great progress with Honeywell on its Honeywell Anthem integrated flight deck and flight control computers, and we are delighted to deepen our relationship by also partnering with Honeywell and Denso on our e-motor.

“The collaboration with these two powerhouses takes us further along the path to revolutionizing regional air mobility.”

Leave a Reply