Airbus and AeroDelft bring hydrogen-powered flight step closer

Airbus has teamed up with student team AeroDelft to jointly advance the use of hydrogen in aviation. According to the two organisations, the research into the use of hydrogen in aviation may result in sending a two-seater aircraft powered by liquid hydrogen into the air in 2025.

AeroDelft is a student team of Delft University with one mission: to prove that emission-free aviation is possible by developing the world’s first manned liquid hydrogen-powered aircraft.

InnovationOrigins reports that the collaboration is a good fit with the Airbus’s ZEROe program, in which the company is developing the first commercial aircraft that will be powered by hydrogen. The aspiration of Airbus is to be operational this way by 2035.

AeroDelft plans to test hydrogen-powered flight with their Project Phoenix prototype of an unmanned drone. “In the next few months we are going to integrate a gaseous hydrogen drive into the prototype”, said Wouter van der Linden, Team Manager at AeroDelft, adding that the organization intends to have an integrated liquid hydrogen drive and fly with it before this summer. By 2024, AeroDelft’s full-scale aircraft should be flying on gaseous hydrogen. A year later it will be flying on liquid hydrogen.