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Sun, Jun 16, 2024

Surf Air Establishes Foothold in Brazil

Charter Operator Promises to Convert 4 of its Grand Caravans to Surf's Electric Propulsion

Surf Air Mobility inked a memorandum of understanding with a Brazilian Caravan operator to convert 4 of their aircraft into electric aircraft.

Surf Air has been pretty busy finding business south of the equator, where the Cessna Caravan and Grand Caravan often form the backbone of outlying settlements' air transit. As such, it's a very hard offer to pass up, swapping their fuel-burning Pratt & Whitney PT-6 turboprops for a proprietary battery-powered propulsion system. While many onlookers focus on Surf's all-electric aircraft, they intend to offer a hybrid variant, too. That should ultimately prove just as popular in time, being a more flexible system for those operating in the far-flung reaches of civilization. Surf says that converted electric Caravans should see a drop of about 50% in direct operating costs, and 100% in carbon emissions for the non-hybrid variant. Both systems are in the process of getting an STC, allowing pretty much any Cessna Caravan to become a futuristic aircraft in a jiffy.

Asta Linhas Aéreas plies the usual Caravan trade in Brazil, focusing on tourism, corporate, cargo, and charter services with the robustly capable aircraft. They intend to send 4 of their Grand Caravans up to Surf Air Mobility for the modification once it's certified.

“We’re excited to expand Surf Air’s presence in Brazil, and are looking forward to working with Asta to help make their operations more cost effective and less harmful to the environment with our electrified powertrain, once certified,” said Deanna White, Interim CEO and COO of Surf Air Mobility.

“It is with great pleasure that we receive the opportunity to collaborate with Surf Air Mobility in the evolution of the technology for electrified aircraft. This agreement is part of our constant investments in new technologies seeking operational efficiency and providing a better experience for our customers. The implementation of the electric powertrain aims to reduce fuel and maintenance costs, besides being essential to minimize the carbon footprint in aviation,” explained José Neto, Planning and Management Director of Asta Linhas Aéreas.

FMI: www.surfair.com

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