HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaiian Airlines is exploring electric aircraft technology with a company based in Boston.
The airline is interested in using the vehicles for travel between Hawaii's islands, Hawaii News Now reported.
The company called REGENT is designing “seagliders” that would each carry up to 100 people.
Hawaiian hasn't committed to purchasing any of the aircraft but is exploring the possibility. A news release from REGENT said Hawaiian agreed to strategically invest to support the initial design of the company's next-generation seaglider.
Hawaiian is the first airline to partner with the company, which hopes to have its Monarch seagliders in the air by 2028.
“We look forward to working with REGENT to explore the technology and infrastructure needed to fulfill our vision for convenient, comfortable and environmentally sustainable interisland transportation,” said Avi Mannis, chief marketing and communications officer at Hawaiian Airlines.
REGENT's seagliders fly through the air close to the water's surface. The company said the aircraft will service routes up to 180 miles (290 kilometers) with existing battery technology and routes up to 500 miles (800 kilometers) with next-generation batteries. The company said the seagliders will move at the speed of an airplane but have the operating cost of boats and will use existing dock infrastructure.
This version has been corrected to reflect that the vehicles are seagliders or aircraft but not airplanes.