The huge hurdle that could delay Airbus making a hydrogen airliner

Airbus has provided an important progress check in its ambitious bid to develop hydrogen-powered aircraft, as Richard Schuurman reports from Toulouse

During the Airbus Summit on November 30 in Toulouse and December 1 in Ottobrunn, near Munich, the OEM shared the latest details about its next-generation ZEROe platform. The most important announcement was that Airbus now has a working hydrogen fuel cell demonstrator, capable of producing one megawatt of electricity to drive a propeller. By 2025 it is hoped that this will rise to two megawatts.

The two-day event was held across two sites in France and Germany
The two-day event was held across two sites in France and Germany Airbus

The demonstrator confirms that a system using hydrogen and fuel cells to make electricity can be done. Right now, the machine is the size of a truck and will require significant integration and downsizing before it fits into a nacelle on the wing of an aircraft.

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