The 2010s was the decade when climate debate really grabbed the headlines. Sustainability is now on everyone's agenda; politicians, investors, companies, and consumers of all ages, even children. People are getting conscious about consuming resource-demanding products and gravitate toward experiences and services that don't damage our planet. A very strong trend for sustainability is in the high-end segment, where experiences are growing steadily and conventional luxury is getting less interest. Consumers see through clever marketing campaigns and glossy greenwash. In order to be successful, there must be honest intentions to actually supporting and creating change.
OceanSky was created in 2014 with a vision to become a sustainable airline. It was before flight shame and climate strikes, in an aviation industry that suffered from initiatives and a weak outlook to move away from oil-dependent airplanes. Since then, electrification has swung up as the big solution to aviation. The problem is the fundamental physics behind battery capacity. 57 tonnes of batteries (if using the latest technology) is equal in energy to 1 tonne of oil. This means that electrical airplanes can be used for ultra-short flights (less than a few percent of total air miles), but will not be a viable option for short- mid- or long-flights.
Lighter-than-air (LTA) technology, however, can be an extremely energy-efficient alternative for mid- and long-range operations. And possibly completely emission-free within a decade.
We hope the '20s will be the decade of disruption. Companies that cannot adapt to a sustainability agenda will perish. Companies that embrace sustainability and social responsibility will flourish.
OceanSky's founders researched the Lighter-Than-Air (LTA) technology in the '90s and could show the potential of the technology on paper, both the benefit for transportation as well as the benefit for the environment. In the '00s OceanSky actively researched the initiatives in the LTA sector. Large military budgets were the only investments directed to large scale airship development.
In the '10s OceanSky participated actively in the LTA industry with the formation of the company. In last years the initiatives in the LTA sector were directed to civil aviation and the largest airship ever built in more than 70 years flew in 2012 for the first time. This rewrote the history of aviation but didn't get the publicity it deserved.
In the '20s OceanSky will fly the world's largest most advanced modern hybrid airship to the North Pole. What follows is the exciting potential with LTA technology and the possibility to show zero-emission commercial midrange flights already in this decade.