Washington State Grant Supports ZeroAvia Project at Paine Field

Paine Field is a tactical hub for the region, housing more than 500 aircraft of all categories. [Courtesy: Snohomish County]

The Washington State Department of Commerce awarded ZeroAvia a $350,000 grant to support its site selection at Paine Field Airport (KPAE) in Snohomish County, Washington. The company received the support of the Economic Alliance Snohomish County (EASC), which requested the funds to convert warehouses at Paine Field to research and development space.

In a joint press release with the county Tuesday, the company said the grant will help it leverage its $5.5 million refurbishment budget at the Everett, Washington, airport to occupy facilities in addition to providing a workspace for a launch team of 20 design and software engineers. 

The team of engineers is critical in supporting ZeroAvia’s development of the ZA2000 powertrain for a de Havilland DHC-8-400 (Q400) aircraft in conjunction with Alaska Airlines.

In a statement, Val Miftakhov, ZeroAvia founder said, “Paine Field was an obvious choice,” adding that his company would now be “well-positioned among one of the most talented aerospace and clean energy communities worldwide.”

Snohomish County is led by executive Dave Somers and is the third-largest county in Washington state. It owns and operates Paine Field, adjacent to Everett’s central business district. The airport is a tactical hub for the region, housing more than 500 aircraft of all categories.

“ZeroAvia is exactly the type of company that Snohomish County wants to attract because they are innovators, job-creators, part of our growing green economy, and the reason we are the aerospace capital of the world,” Somers said.

Snohomish County is home to more than 500 aerospace companies that produce more than $60 billion in annual revenues and support 159,000 direct and induced jobs. The county has deployed its Strategic Reserve Fund specifically to recruit, retain, and expand the appeal of Washington State to skilled professionals.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee knows what the grant money can accomplish.

“This project is an important part of Snohomish County’s continuing efforts to maintain a competitive edge and strengthen the community with good jobs in the aerospace industry of the future,” he said.

ZeroAvia is initially targeting 500-mile range, 10- to-20-seat aircraft that can be used across all commercial market segments. For its ZA600 program, ZeroAvia hopes to fly a 19-seat aircraft in a hybrid configuration in the weeks to come and fly a hydrogen-electric power aircraft this year. 

The company has recently announced separate deals with de Havilland Canada and United Airlines(NASDAQ:UAL).

Michael Wildes holds a master’s degree in Logistics & Supply Chain Management, and a bachelor’s degree in Aeronautical Science, both from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Previously, he worked at the university’s flight department as a Flight Check Airman, Assistant Training Manager, and Quality Assurance Mentor. He holds MEI, CFI & CFII ratings. Follow Michael on Twitter @Captainwildes.

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