ZeroAvia has recently entered into strategic partnerships with several of the world’s leading airline and manufacturing companies. As a result, ZeroAvia is poised to take bold steps forward in the pursuit of zero-emission air transportation.
ZeroAvia is the world leader in hydrogen-electric fuel solutions for air travel. Based in the U.K. and the U.S., it is developing hydrogen-electric power trains to power small aircraft. The company’s goal is to have commercial air travel using the technology by 2024.
New Airline Partnerships for ZeroAvia Announced
In recent months, the company has announced major partnerships with airline companies in Ireland, India, and the United States. In each partnership, ZeroAvia will install its powertrain solutions in the airlines’ planes.
Agreement with Irish Company
ASL Aviation Holdings announced plans to install the powertrain in a retired ATR72F aircraft. ZeroAvia will use the plane for its developmental program and as a demonstration plane.
ASL Aviation Holdings operates in Ireland and throughout Asia, Europe, and South Africa. The companies will collaborate on the ZA2000 power train, which generates 2-5 megawatts of power.
The partnership calls for retrofitting ATR72 aircraft that typically hold 40 to 90 passengers. ASL expects to launch zero-emission aircraft by 2026 using the hydrogen-electric powertrain technology.
Indian Company to Install Engines on Small Passenger Planes
The company has agreed to a deal with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. The company is an Indian state-owned aeronautics and defense contractor.
Under the terms of the deal, the companies will integrate the ZeroAvia powertrain into the Dornier 228 airframe. That aircraft is a 19-seat plane capable of trips of 500 nautical miles.
The Indian company would also build new planes that would use the zero-emission engines. The two companies also will work toward securing a Supplemental Type Certificate. That certification would allow for retrofitting of existing airframes for use in military and commercial operations.
ZeroAvia is very familiar with the Dornier 228 airplane. The company is using the Dornier 228 at its Cotswold Airport site in the U.K. The company has completed successful ground tests of installing a zero-emission power train in the airplane. It expects to have commercial service for the plane type by 2024.
Alaska Airlines Parent Company Agreement Reached
The company reached a deal with Alaska Air Group to create a hydrogen-electric powertrain for planes traveling 500 miles.
The two companies will collaborate on the development of a powertrain that can be used in a 76-passenger aircraft. The power train would provide 2,000 to 5,000 kilowatts of power.
The agreement calls for the two companies to scale the existing and in-development power train technology. That step will allow for the tech to be used in larger craft capable of carrying more passengers for longer distances.
The technology will be installed in full-size De Havilland Q400 aircraft. If the initial project is successful, Alaska Air has an option to purchase an additional 50 power trains. Those engines would be used to convert additional aircraft in its commercial fleet.
As part of the collaboration, ZeroAvia will establish a new site in Washington.
ZeroAvia Sees Investments, Demand as Airlines Reduce Carbon Footprint
Alaska Air has also made a financial investment in ZeroAvia as part of the deal. Other top investors include Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Ventures and the Amazon Climate Pledge Fund.
Like many of its competitors, Alaska Air has signed on to The Climate Pledge. That agreement calls for airlines to reach annual net-zero carbon emissions by 2040. That’s good news for ZeroAvia, which is working with multiple airlines worldwide to deliver on that pledge.
Mitsubishi Subsidiary to Partner on Regional Jets
While planning for increasingly larger flight capabilities, ZeroAvia has set its sights on regional jets. The company is aiming to have the technology to support larger, longer flights by 2028.
In October 2021, the company signed a deal with MHIRJ Aviation Group (MHIRJ). The group is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. It’s also the world’s largest maintenance, repair, and overhaul company for CRJ Series aircraft.
The collaboration calls for the two companies to work together on developing the hydrogen-electric technology for use in regional jets. The deal could call for the development of new aircraft or retrofitting existing aircraft.
MHIRJ will support the engineering services necessary to certify the new engines. The company will also advise ZeroAvia on the ability to create a green retrofit program for regional planes.
It’s a crucial step for the company. ZeroAvia has already completed more than 35 test flights in six-seat Piper M-class aircraft using the hydrogen-fueled power train. The new partnerships are part of an active 12 months for the company. It was named a winner in the Fast Company World Changing Ideas competition. It also was named a 2021 Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum. In addition, the company was named to the Global Coalition for Sustainable Aviation, which is run by a U.N. agency.
Check out this snippet of the ZeroAvia-led Project HyFlyer. Our successes and lessons learned are being used in HyFlyer II. Big thanks to partners @EMEC_Ltd and @intellenergy. Click below to watch the full video. #hydrogen #aviation #fuelcell #zeroemission pic.twitter.com/JRxm9zQyF7
— ZeroAvia (@ZeroAvia) September 20, 2021