H2 View understands that the funding will see a solar-powered hydrogen electrolyser, to supply fuel-cell aircraft research, ground operations vehicles, as well as hydrogen internal combustion engines (ICE) and gas turbine combustors.

Additionally, the Net Zero Research Airport project plans to source mobile hydrogen compression and vehicle refuelling system to support research projects across the Cranfield campus.

The funding from Research England will also have an immediate impact on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from flying and airside operations at Cranfield University, amounting to 305 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year.

In September 2020, Cranfield supported ZeroAvia in achieving the world’s first hydrogen fuel cell powered flight of a commercial-grade aircraft.

Read more: World’s first hydrogen-electric passenger plan takes off

Professor Iain Gray, Director of Aerospace at Cranfield University said, “This funding is a welcome boost to our innovation and research at Cranfield University, it will have an immediate impact on our own operations and emissions.

“And in the longer term it will help us to make a significant contribution to the government’s ambition of net zero aviation by 2050 and global net zero targets, as new technologies and developments are adopted by the aviation industry.

“There is a pressing need for a clear pathway to a future world of sustainable aviation, and Cranfield University can help to build that.”

The funding from the UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UKRPIF), will see the Bedfordshire based researchers hope to develop low-carbon aircraft and as well as decarbonising airport logistics.

As the only university in Europe with its own airport, alongside leading aerospace research facilities and Cranfield University hopes to harness digital and physical technologies to achieve rapid innovation.

Professor Graham Braithwaite, Director of Transport Systems at Cranfield University said, “Our research has been developing at pace and it’s now crucial that we have this additional infrastructure to keep moving forward.

“The whole aviation ecosystem – from ground operations to aircraft, from airports to autonomy – is on the cusp of huge and positive disruption; and we have a lead role, working alongside industry partners and new start-up businesses, to bring the potential for net zero to fruition.”

‘The best strategic choice for zero-carbon flight in the future ought to be liquid hydrogen’ H2 View’s aviation webinar hears 

H2 View hosted its webinar today (May 13) that delved into the uses of hydrogen in the aerospace and aviation sector to attain Net Zero climate targets.

Joining Rob Cockerill, Global Managing Editor, and George Heynes, News Journalist at H2 View, for the Hydrogen: Aerospace & Aviation webinar was James McMicking, Vice-President Strategy at ZeroAviva; Dr. Alex Ivanenko, co-

founder and CEO at HyPoint; and Simon Webb, Head of Zero-Carbon Strategy at the Aerospace Technology Institute.

Getting the ball rolling on the topic of the promise hydrogen holds in aviation was McMicking, who explained that ZeroAvia has been making progress in this space, with taking the opportunity to use existing aircrafts to showcase the possibilities of its hydrogen fuel cell systems.

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