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Transport is the highest emitting sector of greenhouse gases for the UK: aviation and shipping combined represent over 11% of the total.

For Orkney, where air and sea provide lifeline services for island communities, cutting usage is not an option. Instead, innovative low-carbon technologies for planes and ferries are being trialled and demonstrated.

Kirkwall airport is being used as a testbed for alternatives including hybrid aircraft powered by electricity or sustainable aviation fuels, and trials of drone applications to supply on-demand medical supplies to health centres. Work on hydrogen as a maritime fuel through the HyDIME project will see hydrogen technology trialled on MV Shapinsay.

We’ll hear from Dr James Walker, hydrogen development manager at the European Marine Energy Centre EMEC, assisted by operations technican Jerry Gibson.

We’ll also hear the background to the first hybrid electric flights to take place in Scotland, carried out from Kirkwall airport very recently, from Prof. Andrew Rae of UHI who is the chief engineer of the company Ampaire looking after this development.

The options for drone deliveries will be described by German Moreno of Windracers. It’s a not-for-profit organisation established to provide drone services for public benefit, in research and environmental protection as well as in humanitarian aid.

You can watch this free event from here, through the YouTube link below, or if you’d like to join questions and discussion, you can also go to the Science Festival’s YouTube channel

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