Japan’s Nidec Corporation, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of electric motors, and Brazil’s Embraer aircraft company are moving ahead with plans to establish a new joint venture called Nidec Aerospace to develop electric propulsion systems for the aerospace sector. They announced in October receiving all regulatory approvals necessary to proceed.
Nidec Aerospace is expected to invest more than $77.7 million by 2026 and start mass production in 2026. Nidec owns a 51% share of the joint venture, and Embraer the remaining 49%.
First off the production line will be motorized propulsion systems to power vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) craft for Eve, a separate new company recently established by Embraer. While product design is still in development, likely the systems will be powered by permanent magnet motors, building upon Nidec’s engineering expertise in design and production of them.
Eve’s eVTOL aircraft utilizes a lift+cruise configuration with eight dedicated propellers for vertical flight and fixed wings to fly on cruise, with no change in the position of these components during flight. The latest concept includes an electric pusher powered by dual electric motors that provide propulsion redundancy while ensuring high performance and safety. While offering numerous advantages including lower cost of operation, fewer parts, optimized structures and systems, it has been developed to offer efficient thrust with low sound.
Eve’s first eVTOL production facility will be located in the city of Taubaté, in the state of São Paulo, Brazil. The company has begun assembly of its first full-scale eVTOL prototype which will be followed by a test campaign in 2024. Eve’s eVTOL is scheduled to begin deliveries and enter into service in 2026.
Vincent Braley, chief of staff for Nidec’s Motion and Drives business in the United States, has been appointed the CEO of Nidec Aerospace. Braley brings broad experience in business development and management to his new role to lead the joint venture’s future growth.
This approval marks a significant milestone not only in Nidec Motion & Energy’s joint venture with Embraer, but also in our shared vision to advance and electrify the way the world travels,” said Michael Briggs, senior vice president and president of the Motion & Energy Business Unit at Nidec. “Now with official clearance to proceed, the Nidec Aerospace team is poised to bring the expertise, speed, and drive needed to accelerate sustainable aviation on a global scale.”
“We are thrilled with the unconditional clearance. The next step will be the integration of these two powerful operational and engineering capabilities focused on business excellence. Together, our extraordinary teams will be able to develop advanced solutions to collaborate with the future of sustainable aviation,” said Dimas Tomelin, senior vice president of corporate strategy, digital and innovation at Embraer.
Unveiled at the Paris Air Show in June, the business combination aims to unlock new opportunities by providing an agnostic portfolio of products and services worldwide, driven initially by the growth of the Urban Air Mobility (UAM) industry. The UAM market is emerging and could create a USD 1.5 trillion market by 2040, according to Morgan Stanley Research.
In the joint venture’s e-propulsion system for launch customer Eve, Embraer will contribute expertise and resources pertaining to the controller, and Nidec will provide its expertise and resources pertaining to electric motors. For more info, see www.nidec.com, www.embraer.com and www.eveairmobility.com.