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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Air Canada becomes first airline to install GaN de-icing technology from De-Ice

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Air Canada has been named by De-Ice as its first client to employ its electromagnetic technology for more environmentally friendly aircraft de-icing.

The technology will be used on Airbus A320 family aircraft, where proprietary electronics inside the aircraft are connected to tape-like strips attached to the outside of the aircraft.

In order to ensure that the aircraft is clear of ice and prepared for takeoff by the time it is pushed from the gate, the pilot activates the system, which produces high-frequency current and causes electrons on the aircraft’s surface to jiggle. This heat-producing effect melts snow and ice during the boarding process.

The De-Ice system uses devices that weigh an order of magnitude less than traditional equipment to generate a high-frequency current using a semiconductor called gallium nitride.

According to De-Ice, transistors that could produce high-frequency current before gallium nitride were constructed of silicon, which is too inefficient to be applied in this situation.

The technology lowers carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and allows aircraft to be de-iced without requiring de-icing fluids.

Alexander Bratianu-Badea, Co-Founder of De-Ice, said: “De-Ice is proud to introduce our product to the world with Air Canada. Flight delays and the excess carbon emissions caused by chemical-based de-icing will be a thing of the past.”

Murray Strom, Senior Vice President Flight Operations and Maintenance at Air Canada, added: “Not only will De-Ice technology be positive for our customers by reducing delays related to the conventional method of aircraft ice removal, but the environmental benefits of chemical-free de-icing and associated lower fuel consumption are in line with Air Canada’s commitment to a net zero emissions goal from all global operations by 2050.”

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