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Charley Rattan's picture
World Hydrogen Leader Charley Rattan Associates

UK based offshore wind & hydrogen corporate advisor and trainer; Faculty member World Hydrogen Leaders. Delivering global hydrogen and offshore wind corporate investment advice, business...

  • Member since 2019
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  • Jun 30, 2021

The UK Government has today (June 30) unveiled the launch of a first round £3m ($4m) Zero Emission Flight Infrastructure (ZEFI) competition. Keep up to date through me at the Hydrogen Aviation Professionals Group

Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Jun 30, 2021

Air travel is one of the areas I think hydrogen can have the biggest impact, because we're really talking about something that doesn't have any non-fossil competitors at present time. Electric aircraft won't work beyond small pond skippers, but green hydrogen can transform travel, shipping, etc.!

Nathan Wilson's picture
Nathan Wilson on Jul 3, 2021

Speaking of electric aircraft, this UK project to convert a 9-passenger twin-engine propeller plane to battery-hybrid just shifted to hydrogen fuel cell power! See here or here

They are expecting the range to plummet compared to the standard gas powered version: to 100-135nm from 639-728nm (plus 45 min reserves), but they think some of their customers can use that.  Note that propeller airplanes have a very serious noise problem, but they do get good range and fly below cloud-top level (iirc, above the clouds, water vapor from engine exhaust counts as a human-caused greenhouse gas whereas at low altitudes, water vapor is a normal part of air).

Note that the range problem with hydrogen is caused by the very poor density (energy/volume), and the heavy tanks which are required for the high pressure of gaseous H2.  If ammonia were used instead, energy/mass would be the limiting factor; ammonia has 43% of the energy mass density of gasoline, so we'd expect the range to be over 280 miles.

Ammonia is a better fuel than H2, in many applications, including aviation; it just needs more grass-roots support.

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