“Propelling the future of aviation” – Chloe Smith MP to visit Aviation Academy as SaxonAir support Electric Propulsion Innovation Zone launch

International Aviation Academy

Jet and helicopter operator SaxonAir, based at Norwich Airport, get ready to support the future of aviation through the launch of an ‘Electrical Propulsion Innovation Zone’ as local MP Chloe Smith visits the International Aviation Academy at Norwich during the Department for Transport’s launch of their new campaign to boost aviation recruitment, Generation Aviation.

SaxonAir, alongside NUNCATS, NEBOair, and Swift Aircraft have joined forces to put together a showcase of Electric Aircraft at the academy, following the recent Summer School success which saw students given the opportunity to take part in the build of an electric aircraft, trying their hand at basic engineering.


The group have also collectively formed the NetZero General Aviation Training Group (NGAT) and will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) during Chloe Smith’s visit on 4th November 2022. 


NGAT will look at the specific training requirements that net zero aviation development requires, recognising the cross-over with STEM opportunities as well as general engineering training opportunities – in particular, electric automotive engineering, with other transport sectors represented locally.


The formation of NGAT reinforces SaxonAir’s commitment to the future of electric aviation, following their recent work with NEBOair to champion an aircraft charging network and take electric aviation to the next level.


SaxonAir CEO Alex Durand said: “Norwich’s International Aviation Academy has significant potential. A unique space with workshops and classrooms spaces, the academy hosts a fully certified Boeing 737 allowing an exclusive opportunity to apply aircraft engineering theory to live aircraft – which we believe was a world first.”


“The Academy is incredibly relevant to STEM pathways and raising local aspirations. To demonstrate our commitment to propelling the future of aviation, we have taken a lease in the building and are already delivering Flight Attendant training alongside other courses, which alternative engineering pathways in development which may have relevance to beyond the aviation sector,”
he continued.


“And in light of the government launching their new campaign to boost aviation recruitment, we believe now is the time to accelerate efforts to upskill young people and offer them basic engineering skills which can be delivered for school, Further Education and Apprenticeship levels with specialism into aviation, automotive and similar coming later,” he concluded. 


Norse Group CEO Justin Galliford said, “We are proud to host this initiative and look forward to seeing the project come to fruition. The work that NGAT will undertake will see high-value job opportunities for local young people and tackle the issue of skill shortages in the aviation industry.”