H2FLY and Air Liquide tests hydrogen-electric aircraft storage

H2FLY and project part­ner Air Liq­uide have suc­cess­ful­ly test­ed an air­craft-inte­grat­ed liq­uid hydro­gen stor­age sys­tem dur­ing on-ground cou­pling tests, with its HY4 air­craft, com­plet­ed in prepa­ra­tion for H2FLY’s upcom­ing flight test cam­paign.

This achieve­ment is part of the Euro­pean project HEAVEN, a con­sor­tium of six com­pa­nies demon­strat­ing the fea­si­bil­i­ty of using liq­uid cryo­genic hydro­gen in air­craft, led by H2FLY.

The new liq­uid hydro­gen stor­age sys­tem, which is designed and sup­plied by Air Liq­uide based on H2FLY’s require­ments, has been suc­cess­ful­ly cou­pled with the fuel cell sys­tem on ground.

This part­ner­ship rep­re­sents the final tech­no­log­i­cal build­ing block in the devel­op­ment of a com­plete hydro­gen-elec­tric pow­er­train using liq­uid hydro­gen to pow­er the HY4, H2FLY’s four-seater demon­stra­tor air­craft which runs on hydro­gen and fuel cells.

The com­pa­ny led the test cam­paign on Air Liquide’s Cam­pus Tech­nolo­gies Greno­ble to mark an upcom­ing ground and flight test cam­paign this sum­mer, when the HY4 is expect­ed to be the first pas­sen­ger air­craft to fly with liq­uid hydro­gen and fuel cells.

H2FLY is the first com­pa­ny to suc­cess­ful­ly per­form on-ground cou­pling tests with an air­craft-inte­grat­ed liq­uid hydro­gen tank and fuel cell sys­tem, pro­vid­ing pio­neer­ing tech­no­log­i­cal advance­ments for Euro­pean Avi­a­tion Safe­ty Agency (EASA) CS-23 and CS-25 air­craft reg­u­la­tions for cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.

Pro­fes­sor Josef Kallo, co-founder and CEO of H2FLY said: “With the suc­cess­ful pass­ing of the on-ground cou­pling tests, we have learnt that it will be pos­si­ble to scale up our tech­nol­o­gy for a 40-seater air­craft.”

This fol­lows the company’s announce­ment last month that it passed its first fill­ing tests with the inte­grat­ed liq­uid hydro­gen tank. Key mile­stones include:
1) In 2020 H2FLY was grant­ed a per­mit to fly the HY4 air­craft, which fea­tured a ful­ly redun­dant pow­er­train archi­tec­ture.
2) In 2021 the com­pa­ny signed a part­ner­ship with air­craft man­u­fac­tur­er Deutsche Air­craft to fly a CS25 class air­craft pow­ered by H2FLY’s hydro­gen fuel cell tech­nol­o­gy, expect­ed to fly in 2025.
3) Ear­li­er last year, the com­pa­ny com­plet­ed a cross-coun­try flight in Ger­many from Stuttgart to Friedrichshafen, cov­er­ing 77 miles.
4) Also last year, the com­pa­ny set what is believed to be a world alti­tude record for a hydro­gen air­craft, fly­ing at 7,230 feet.

Boris Sedacca

Boris produces the editorial content for eVTOL Insights and covers many topics, including batteries, powertrains, certification, public acceptance, landing and charging infrastructure. Please reach out to him with any potential stories via editorial@evtolinsights.com

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