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Business Air News Bulletin
Business Air News Bulletin
The monthly news publication for aviation professionals.
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Kenyan Caravan operators source electric powertrains
Safarilink and Yellow Wings are excited about the potential to transform regional aviation within Kenya and East Africa by demonstrating the viability and impact that electrified Caravans will have on the industry.
SafariLink and Yellow Wings intend their Cessna Caravans to become all-electric in 2027.

Safarilink, an airline connecting domestic scheduled flights to destinations within Kenya and Tanzania, and Yellow Wings Air Services, a Kenyan air operator that serves over 500 airfields throughout the East Africa region, are to upgrade their Cessna Grand Caravan aircraft with Surf Air Mobility's proprietary electrified powertrain technology, once certified.

The two companies are pioneering the adoption of technologies necessary for a greener and quieter (crucial for Kenyan wildlife) future in transportation, and the agreement also aligns with the Kenyan government's recent announcement to completely move away from fossil fuels and toward renewable energy sources by 2030. Both Safarilink and Yellow Wings are already focused on sustainability and wildlife conservation efforts, however the companies believe the move to electrified aircraft will drive sustainability even further while setting the stage for global transformation.

"We at Safarilink are committed to doing everything possible to preserve the natural beauty of the countries we operate in," says CEO Alex Avedi. "Implementing Surf Air Mobility's electric powertrain technology will help us reduce the noise and minimise the climate impact of our flights as we help people from all over the world to experience our region's incredible ecosystem."

"We strongly believe in alternative propulsion for air travel. We have always been the frontrunners in adopting new systems and innovations. Kenya, with 91 per cent carbon free power generation, is the ideal country to spearhead this movement," adds Yellow Wings CEO Christian Strebel.

This partnership marks another milestone as Surf Air Mobility seeks to expand its global footprint. As the exclusive partner to Textron to electrify the Caravan, it is focused on building its business in regions around the world, such as Africa, that are already significant markets for that airframe and where transportation providers are quickly adopting innovative mobility solutions. Surf Air is developing the supplemental type certification for both hybrid and fully-electric variants of the Cessna Grand Caravan.

"The Caravan is an amazing aircraft on which to develop our electrified powertrain, and we believe Safarilink's and Yellow Wings' operations are perfectly suited to demonstrate the benefits of our technology," says CEO Stan Little. "We believe Africa is at the cutting edge of regional air mobility. Surf Air is excited to work with innovative, pioneering companies like Safarilink and Yellow Wings."

"Our goal is to deploy our proprietary electrification technology on a global scale, in addition to our own network," adds Fred Reid, global head of business development. "Upgrading Safarilink's and Yellow Wings' Caravan fleet with our electrified powertrains unlocks new possibilities. As air travel economics change with electrification, we believe Safarilink and Yellow Wings can improve current services, launch new viable routes and reduce environmental impact."

Other News
Z.Boskovic to electrify charter ops with Surf Air powertrains
January 23, 2024
Electrifying its fleet positions ZBAC well within Kenya's consumer landscape, with increasing demand for safari and adventure trips along with a greater demand for greener, more sustainable travel.
MEHAIR orders hydrogen-electric engines for Caravans
January 23, 2024
The regional airline will retrofit the clean engines to its fleet of wheeled and amphibious Caravans for last-mile connectivity across runways and waterways.
Ampaire’s EEL completes record 12 hour flight
December 14, 2023
The hybrid electric demonstrator aircraft flew for 12 hours and still had fuel and battery reserves enough for two hours more.