In recent years, cars using fuel other than gasoline have become the norm and are perceived as something commonplace. For other means of transport, however, not everything is so clear. Aviation remains the most "conservative" issue in this matter, but developments in this area are also regular. In the UK, for example, preparations for testing the first hydrogen-fueled passenger plane in England are in full swing.
Why is a hydrogen airplane needed?
Today, there are several programs in Europe aimed at creating environmentally friendly transport. One of the most promising is also the creation of means of transport for the needs of civil aviation: aircraft and helicopters. And if it is possible to argue with the "environmental friendliness" of electrotransport, because of the environmental impact of power generation (albeit to a lesser extent), then hydrogen is already a genuinely clean source of energy, because the only by-product is the work of Hydrogen elements is water. What do you think about alternative energy sources? Write about it in our chat in telegram.
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Under this program, the Department of Transportation has allocated £ 2.7 million (approximately $ 3.3 million) for the HyFlyer project, which will test a six-seat passenger aircraft powered entirely by hydrogen. The American company ZeroAvia and the British Cranfield University are responsible for the development of a new environmentally friendly mode of transport. And the first one already has something in common: Not so long ago, ZeroAvia's specialists have already tested a hydrogen propulsion system in a Piper PA-46 aircraft.
Our goal is to show that zero-emission hydrogen-powered air traffic can play a key role in transportation strategies in the UK and other countries, ZeroAvia said. It has long been proven how a battery can reduce emissions from aircraft and other vehicles. The new project brings us one step closer to reducing these emissions, thereby improving the environmental situation in the world.
Back to the HyFlyer project, I would like to add that on the basis of existing developments a series of tests are planned which will create the conditions for the creation of a full-fledged six-seat aircraft for aviation. According to the company, the exact time of the test flight has not yet been determined, but should be "over the next year and a half". During the tests, the hydrogen aircraft has to fly for about 460-560 kilometers. This distance is roughly the same distance from London to Edinburgh. The tests themselves are carried out on the Scottish Orkney Islands.
The employees of ZeroAvia and the British University of Cranfield do not intend to stop there. By 2022, they will offer the public a hydrogen propulsion system that is already designed for passenger aircraft with space for up to 20 passengers.
It is also worth recalling an interesting domestic project. In the USSR, they were already considering the use of liquid hydrogen in aviation in the early 1960s. At the time, the country's best design offices were working on the creation of a hydrogen-powered aircraft, and new natural gas fields were discovered. This forced the scientists to shorten the project to develop hydrogen and concentrate on natural gas. If this had not happened, the development of aviation might have been completely different.