ZeroAvia has been awarded 3.25 million USD in funding to produce high-efficiency liquid hydrogen refuelling trucks for use at airports.

This grant has been awarded by the California Energy Commission (CEC). It will see ZeroAvia develop a first-of-a-kind mobile liquid hydrogen (LH2) refuelling truck for heavy-duty applications.

To do so, ZeroAvia will commence new operations at Livermore Municipal Airport (LVK) in Alameda County, California ahead of aviation-focused LH2 fueling demonstrations.

Starting operations at Livermore means that ZeroAvia has operations at two California airports
ZeroAvia to open new operations at Livermore Municipal Airport
Pete Sandhu, CEO of Five Rivers Aviation, the Fixed-Base Operator at the Livermore Municipal Airport, said:

Livermore is thrilled to attract the cutting-edge research and development that ZeroAvia is engaged in, leveraging our proximity to two national labs, a well-educated workforce and a capable airport. By pioneering clean and quiet aviation technologies, ZeroAvia is making the aviation industry more compatible with and valuable to our surrounding communities. We’re delighted that ZeroAvia’s CEC project will be developed and demonstrated at Livermore to showcase airports as multi-modal hubs for clean and quiet hydrogen-fueled transport.

Work at Livermore Airport will begin this month to design and build a 10,000-litre mobile LH2 refueler that will have sufficient flow rates to refuel an aircraft in a similar time as with traditional jet fuel.

If successful, this achievement will support the rollout of hydrogen-powered aircraft by enabling them to meet tight turnaround windows.

In addition, the LH2 refuelled will be designed to improve existing energy efficiency in LH2 applications. This will include reducing hydrogen boil-off to less than 0.1 percent per day.

This undertaking therefore complements ZeroAvia’s work in developing hydrogen fuel cell propulsion for the aviation industry.

Val Miftakhov, Founder & CEO, ZeroAvia, said:

Given the gravity of the climate emergency, the rapid acceleration of clean engine technology using fuel cells must be met with optimised refuelling technologies and infrastructure to ensure speedy adoption. This mobile LH2 refueler project is therefore of essential importance to ZeroAvia, the wider aviation industry, and anybody working to clean up heavy duty transportation.

ZeroAvia currently plans to support passenger and cargo flights by the end of 2025 with its first hydrogen-electric engines (ZA600) for 9-19 seat aircraft, using gaseous hydrogen storage.

However, to scale hydrogen engines to larger commercial aircraft and to enable longer ranges, cryogenic liquid hydrogen must be used. This is due to the need to reduce the size and weight of the fuel storage systems.

In partnership with Alaska Airlines, ZeroAvia is thus developing its larger ZA2000 engine family, which includes the Dash-8-400 76-seat aircraft. This aircraft will require up to 1 tonne of LH2 storage on board to support a range of up to 700 nautical miles. It currently has a target launch of 2027.

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