With this in mind, NASA award-winning hydrogen fuel cell pioneer HyPoint has unveiled today (March 29) a new innovative technology that is able to support longer flight ranges using liquid hydrogen.

The technology in question is recognised as ultralight liquid hydrogen fuel tanks with HyPoint collaborating with Gloyer-Taylor Laboratories (GTL) in order to produce the tanks.

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 The partnership aims to integrate GTL’s advanced composite BHL Cryotank liquid hydrogen fuel tanks with HyPoint’s own hydrogen fuel cell system.

But how can this support the aviation industry? The BHL Cryotanks have demonstrated a 75% mass reduction compared to existing state-of-the-art aerospace cryotanks enabling aircraft and eVTOL makers to store ten times more liquid hydrogen without adding mass.

Because of this, the technology could be a true breakthrough for the zero-emission aviation sector and bolster hydrogen’s role in this equation.

This particular tank system can hold over 150kg of liquid hydrogen, giving it a hydrogen storage ratio of at least 50% (the weight of stored hydrogen fuel relative to total system weight) which is as much as 10 times greater than current state-of-the-art fuel tanks, HyPoint has stated.

Dr. Alex Ivanenko, founder and CEO of HyPoint, said, “Reducing weight is the most important factor for enabling longer-distance air travel with fewer stops to refuel.

“Our hydrogen fuel cell system offers better specific power performance compared with any alternative available today, opening the door to short-haul zero-emission hydrogen flight and urban air mobility.

“This partnership with GTL goes even further by offering aircraft and eVTOL makers a liquid hydrogen tank that is stronger and lighter than anything else on the market, thereby significantly increasing fuel capacity.

“By utilising this new fuel tank technology, longer-haul aircraft may be able to utilize hydrogen for the first time while eVTOL makers can effectively multiply their flight range and operational time.

“We’re excited to be working with GTL to offer superior alternative power sources and accelerate the adoption of zero-emission hydrogen across the aviation industry.”

Sergei Shubenkov, co-founder and Head of R&D at HyPoint, said, “Based on our internal analysis of a De Havilland Canada Dash 8 Q300, which seats 50 to 56 passengers, the standard PW123B engine would typically support a range of 1,558 kilometers.

“By implementing HyPoint’s system and a standard liquid hydrogen tank, the same aircraft could achieve 5 hours of flight time or a max range of 2,640 kilometers. With GTL’s tank, it could fly for 8.5 hours or a max range of 4,488 kilometers, indicating that this aircraft could fly three times further with zero emissions by using HyPoint and GTL compared with conventional aviation fuel.

“That’s the difference between this plane going from New York to Chicago with high carbon emissions versus New York to San Francisco with zero carbon emissions.”

Hydrogen innovation ready for take-off: How fuel cells could revolutionise the aviation industry

Hydrogen fuel cells continue to be one of the most in demand zero-emission technologies across the globe and remain a champion of the hydrogen industry. In the fuel cell sector, the UK holds a lot of promise with several research institutes and academics using the region’s resources to innovate and advance fuel cell technology.

HyPoint, a pioneering company that prides itself in bringing hydrogen fuel cell technology to the next level, has a particular focus on the aviation sector, recognising the key credentials the technology has in comparison to other zero-emission solutions.

The Californian company recently chose the UK as a new hub for research and development into hydrogen fuel cells as well as to expand operations to the rest of Europe. But how has the UK provided the correct characteristics in which to extend Hypoint’s reach into the hydrogen ecosystem?

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