Air Transport

Universal Hydrogen Co. Is Granted Experimental Airworthiness Certificate by FAA

Universal Hydrogen Co. Is Granted Experimental Airworthiness

Universal Hydrogen Co., with its mission to bring hydrogen aviation to the aviation world, recently announced it was awarded a certificate of special airworthiness in the experimental classification by the (FAA) Federal Aviation Administration to proceed with its hydrogen-powered first flight. In addition, the company also released video footage of bringing out the first aircraft taxi test success. It was designed to evaluate the ground handling qualities and the execution of the fuel-cell electric powertrain at minimum power settings and airspeeds.

The flying testbed Dash 8-300 has a megawatt-class hydrogen fuel cell powertrain in one of its nacelles. The powertrain is arranged similarly to the company's first product, which is a conversion kit for ATR 72-600 regional airliners and is expected to be certified and put into passenger service in 2025. Power directly from the fuel cells is transmitted to the electric motor, eliminating the need for a hybrid battery architecture, and drastically reducing the weight and total cost of ownership of the Universal Hydrogen vehicle.

After the approval of the FAA, the way for the Dash 8-300, the first flight of the flying testbed, gets clear, which will happen at Moses Lake, Washington's Grant County International Airport. Dash 8-300 aircraft would be the largest hydrogen fuel cell-powered flight to take off, and the only hydrogen-powered aircraft to fly was a Soviet Tupolev Tu-155 airliner with one of its jet engines changed to burn hydrogen during a test flight in 1988.

In December 2022, Universal Hydrogen revealed the first operational tests of its modular hydrogen delivery system at its engineering center in Toulouse, France. The tests showed that modular capsule technology is a practical, near-term, and highly scalable way to get hydrogen to airports and into planes. This eliminates the need for expensive new infrastructure since any airport that can handle cargo is already ready for hydrogen. It also gets rid of transfer losses and speeds up the process of refueling with hydrogen, which was both big problems for the zero-emissions fuel.

About Universal Hydrogen

Founded in 2020, Universal Hydrogen is creating the future of aviation with a hydrogen logistics network. Hydrogen will power the next age of aviation and is the best suited fuel for flying allowing planes to run on renewable energy and only release water. The modular hydrogen capsules made by the company move directly from the factory to an airplane anywhere in the world using the existing freight network. It is also working to receive certification for its power conversion kit to retrofit existing regional aircraft to fly on hydrogen.

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EIN Presswire | January 29, 2024

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Business Wire | January 25, 2024

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