L2 Aerospace and Cella Energy have teamed up to develop hydrogen storage technology for small, fuel-cell-powered unmanned aircraft systems and potentially other, larger manned and unmanned vehicles. The companies are displaying a mockup of a concept design here at the Farnborough International Airshow (Hall 3 Stand B25).
Airbus is cooperating with Parker Aerospace (Hall 5 D203) to explore ways to improve the efficiency of fuel cells for aviation applications such as on-board power generation. The objective is to develop a technology demonstrator, which will be followed by a flight-test campaign around the middle of the decade.
A fuel-cell-powered electric airplane is the goal of Worcester, Mass.-based Advanced Technology Products and its nonprofit arm, the Foundation for Advancing Science and Technology Education. At Oshkosh, ATP announced its receipt of a $400,000 NASA grant to develop a fuel cell and exhibited a modified DynAero Lafayette III, built and donated by American Ghiles Aircraft of Deland, Fla. The airplane is being developed in three phases.
Airbus in late February successfully tested an emissions-free fuel cell in flight. The hydrogen- and oxygen-based fuel cell system generated up to 20 kilowatts of electrical power on an A320 test aircraft, and the output was used to power the aircraft’s electric motor pump for the back-up hydraulic circuit that operates the aircraft’s ailerons.
Cessna 208B, Creswell, Ore., March 5, 2003–Cessna Caravan N9793B crashed into trees during a forced landing following an in-flight engine failure at approximately 11:50 a.m. PST. The aircraft, owned and operated by Wright Stuff of Eugene, Ore, came to rest approximately one mile south of Creswell. The Part 91 flight was not on a flight plan and was being operated in VMC.
Hydrogenics, a Toronto design and manufacturing firm, has won a contract to supply 65-kilowatt hydrogen fuel cells for aircraft tow tractors. The contract is from the U.S. Department of Defense Fuel Cell Test and Evaluation Center, operated by Concurrent Technologies (CTC). The Hydrogenics fuel cell module will be mated to a CTC aircraft tug to be used in demonstrations at air force bases and civilian airports in conjunction with the U.S.
U.S. equipment manufacturer Parker Aerospace (Hall 5 E21) is here at Le Bourget promoting its “core” flight-control, hydraulics, fuel and engine systems products in a “streamlined” exhibition stand. Parker is showing fuel-tank inerting systems, for which it has been working with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) for the past four or five years, said technology and innovation group vice president Mark Czaja.
The ultra-light Akoya, an original amphibian twin-seater, is to make its first flight by this summer. The Akoya can takeoff from land, water or even snow thanks to innovative features, Lisa Airplanes CEO Erick Herzberger explained to EBACE Convention News. Simultaneously, the Chambery, France-based company is working on a fuel-cell powered aircraft, the Hy-Bird.
Rolls-Royce is now exploring future engine technologies that, although challenging, are key to the ambitious Advisory Council for Aerospace Research in Europe (ACARE) goals for 2020 in terms of nitrous oxides (NOx) and carbon dioxide (CO2) emission cutting and noise reduction. These technologies range from heat exchangers to shape memory alloys and magnetic bearings.
Airliners now entering revenue service will be around for the next few decades, over which time forecasters expect the cost of kerosene to rise significantly. Higher oil extraction costs and likely carbon dioxide (CO2) emission limits will no doubt radically alter air transport economics. The industry will simultaneously have to drastically reduce CO2 emissions from aircraft engines and find alternative fuels for them.