One of the most traditional planemakers in history, Fokker can return in 2035, if it depends on the will of Dutch businessmen, who have been trying for years to resurrect the manufacturer, which went bankrupt in 1997.
Now known as the Fokker Next Gen, the company has announced plans to develop a new hydrogen-powered jetliner and already has the support of the Dutch government, which granted 25 million euros to the project, and partners such as the Fokker Services Group.
To get the project off the ground, the company began work on adapting a Fokker 100 to run on liquid hydrogen.
Ground tests will be carried out to validate the project and then another aircraft of the type will be converted to fly with engines capable of burning the green fuel.
According to the company, the first test flight is scheduled for 2028. The hydrogen technology is based on the Cavendish project, led by Rolls-Royce as part of a program funded by the European Union.
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By 2027, however, the new Fokker intends to have a good idea of what the future passenger aircraft will look like. Based on test flights, the Dutch company intends to complete the project review by 2030 and start production of the first parts of the prototype.
Windows replaced with flexible HD screens
Assembly of the first hydrogen-powered Fokker should begin in 2032, according to the startup’s plans with the maiden flight taking place the following year.
The plan is for the first Dutch new generation jets to be delivered to potential customers in 2035.
The plane draws attention for the absence of windows, replaced by flexible high-definition displays, which can be customized by passengers.
In addition to using hydrogen, the Fokker of the future will be able to operate on sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and kerosene.
26 years since bankruptcy
Attempts to revive Fokker, which went bankrupt in 1997, have never stopped. In 2010, the predecessor of the Fokker Next Gen, Rekkof (Fokker spelled backwards), intended to resume production of the Fokker 70 and Fokker 100.
Later, the company shifted focus in favor of a larger aircraft, initially called the Fokker 120NG and later the Fokker 130NG.
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Renamed as Netherlands Aircraft Company, the company tried to make the Fokker 130 viable until recent years, but revised its strategy in favor of a more current project, precisely the Fokker Next Gen.