WEBASTO - Feel the Drive
  • Planes parked at an airport.

    Airports Are Destined For Carbon Neutrality

    New fuel production methods, alternative engines and electric ground support equipment: the climate is on many airports’ radar.
    It is thought there will be 100 carbon-neutral airports across Europe by 2030.

    Today we’re going to take an in-depth look at Munich Airport, which plans to be climate-neutral by 2030, and present two very promising pilot projects.

  • Ambitions For A Carbon-Neutral Future

    The air traffic controllers operate 70 metres above Munich Airport. Alongside the tail numbers of the aircraft on the radar monitors, there’s something else the airport wants to keep track of: its climate targets. Munich Airport plans to be carbon neutral by 2030.

    The operator explains what this means on its website:
    “We are going to reduce our attributable CO2 emission by 60% and compensate the remaining 40%.”

    This offsetting will take the form of emissions certificates and funding for sustainable climate protection projects. The project is not an isolated case – it is just one example in an industry currently undergoing change.

    In 2010, there were only four carbon-neutral airports in Europe. By 2020, this figure had sky-rocketed to 57. It is thought that this figure will be over 100 by 2030.

    Munich Airport air traffic control and aircraft taking off. Munich Airport always has one eye on its air traffic... and one on its climate targets.
  • Many Measures, One Goal: Carbon Neutrality

    Munich Airport is striving for success with a variety of measures within its climate protection programme. One of which is its CHP plant, which generates more than half its electricity using eco-friendly natural gas. The waste heat from the electricity production alone covers almost all the airport’s heating and cooling needs – without any additional use of energy. Lighting elements are being switched to energy-saving LED technology and the fleet of vehicles upgraded to sustainable alternatives. At the moment, 23 vehicles are being run on biogas and other eco-friendly fuels.

  • Pilot Project 1: Carbon-Neutral Bus With A Webasto Standard Battery

    Carbon-neutral bus at the airport in Munich. CM Fluids and Webasto present the passenger bus using carbon-neutral fuel.

    Munich Airport is pressing ahead with many pilot projects on sustainability. Two of which are pioneering in the field of sustainable electromobility and were implemented with the help of Webasto.

    Firstly, start-up CM Fluids modified a conventional passenger bus with standard battery systems from Webasto so that it can now transport passengers using environmentally friendly fuel. This resulted in 90% fewer fine particles and 60% less nitric oxide compared to EURO VI diesel engines.

    “Many Webasto systems can already be found in all kinds of vehicles,” explained Heike Niehues, member of the Board at Webasto. “The project with CM Fluids is a fine example of how modifying vehicles with battery systems can combine the benefits of a combustion engine with the advantages of an electric drive.”

  • Pilot Project 2: All-Electric Aircraft Pushback Tug With Webasto Battery And Expertise

    The second project is an all-electric aircraft pushback tug. A tug is used at airports because aircraft are not able to reverse and getting the plane to drive forwards does not make sense from a financial or ecological perspective.

    The all-electric aircraft pushback tug at Munich Airport is from a company called Goldhofer. The modular battery system with intelligent thermal management, expert electronics and technical support comes from Webasto. This kind of pilot project only got off the ground because two specialists joined forces. In many respects, it leaves cargo aircraft tugs with combustion engines in the dust.

    Aeroplane is put into position by an aircraft pushback tug. Tugs are enormously important for airline operations, as they help aircraft to reverse.
  • The Many Benefits Of The All-Electric Tug

    All-electric tug transports passenger baggage. High-performance, flexible and economical: the new-generation SHERPA E New Gen in action.

    With fuel-operated cargo aircraft tugs, you can assume an average consumption rate of
    6 litres of diesel per operating hour.

    If we’re talking about a tug in operation for around 2,000 hours per year, the new generation of emission-free SHERPA E New Gen tugs could help to save around 30 tons of CO2 per year,  with more power, more flexibility and more efficiency than its diesel counterparts.

    Then there are the benefits that electric vehicles are known for: they are quiet, reliable, smooth to drive, require very little maintenance and supply 100% of their power from the second they hit the road.

    So it’s no wonder that Jochen Preßmar, R&D Project Manager for electric vehicles at Goldhofer, says: “Being one of the first manufacturers to be able to offer highly attractive electric alternatives in cargo and pushback tugs is of course very gratifying. The trend towards emission-free drive systems is very dynamic and irreversible.”

    This stance gives us hope that many other airports will follow Munich’s lead.

  • The Webasto team is delighted to be working on electrifying ground support equipment and helping to pave the way for a green future.

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