ATR and Air New Zealand have expanded their partnership to collaborate on the development and introduction of low emission aircraft technology for regional aviation.

The extended collaboration will act as part of Air New Zealand’s initiative ‘Mission Next Gen Aircraft’, which aims to partner with industry and academic stakeholders to replace the airline’s Q300 domestic fleet with a more sustainable option from 2030.

“Working with the world’s leading innovators is critical to addressing the climate crisis,” said Kiri Hannifin, Chief Sustainability Officer, Air New Zealand.

“Through our partnerships with Airbus and ATR, we’ve been able to deepen our understanding of the impact green hydrogen and battery hybrid aircraft may have on our network, operations and infrastructure,” she added.

ATR is also working on shorter-term sustainability solutions, and in June, was the first to successfully complete a test flight using 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) in both engines. In partnership with Braathens Regional Airlines and Pratt & Whitney Canada, the regional aircraft manufacturer is aiming for 100% SAF certification of its aircraft by 2025.

Nathalie Tarnaud Laude, CEO of ATR, looks forward to taking the partnership with Air New Zealand to the next level: “With Mission Next Gen Aircraft, we will be supporting Air New Zealand in every step of this challenging adventure in investigating disruptive innovations to turn our commitments into tangible reality.”