UK: ZeroAvia expands its hydrogen-electric aviation program to 19-seat aircraft

30 June 2021

To continue the company’s trajectory toward zero-emission flight, ZeroAvia is ramping up its 19-seat aircraft program to decarbonize regional air travel. The company will utilize two twin-engine 19-seat Dornier 228 aircraft – one in the UK and one in the US, provided respectively by Aurigny and AMC Aviation. Both aircraft were previously in service for regional flights in the US and UK.

ZeroAvia’s 19-seat R&D is part of HyFlyer II, the second ZeroAvia-led project backed by the UK Government to target the development of a hydrogen fuel cell powertrain. As part of HyFlyer I, ZeroAvia demonstrated a 250kW power plant in a 6-seat aircraft across three flight test campaigns, achieving all the project’s technical goals, including fuel-cell only cruise flight. All the learnings of HyFlyer will be fully utilized in the development of a 600kW 19-seater power plant in HyFlyer II.

Read more: France/Germany/USA: GM and Liebherr agreed to collaborate on development of a H2 fuel cell technology-based electrical power generation system for aircraft applications

ZeroAvia has also secured an additional $13 million for its 50+ seat engine development program from AP Ventures, Alumni Ventures Group, SGH Capital, Agartha Fund LP, and existing investors Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Summa Equity, Shell Ventures, SYSTEMIQ, and Horizons Ventures. This new funding complements the initial investment of $24 million the company announced a few weeks ago, bringing the total private investment into ZeroAvia large engine development for 50+ seat aircraft to $37 million.

For the 19-seat aircraft, two 600KW units of the company’s hydrogen-electric powertrain will replace the aircraft’s twin engines, along with hydrogen fuel tanks, eventually holding 100kg of compressed gaseous hydrogen to support the 500-mile range of the commercial offering in 2024. Additionally, ZeroAvia is progressing the software, hardware, mechanical integration, and fuel cell balance-of-plant to the certifiable state. The 6-ton aircraft will have a range of 500 nautical miles.


Author: KS / Source: ZeroAvia / Photo: Unsplash