- Title: Universal Hydrogen in zero-carbon plane deals with Icelandair, others
- Date: 14th July 2021
- Summary: KEFLAVIK, ICELAND (FILE - APRIL 23, 2010) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF ICELANDAIR PLANES
- Embargoed: 28th July 2021 22:05
- Keywords: Airbus Icelandair Paul Eremenko Universal Hydrogen airlines clean fuel turboprop systems zero-carbon plane
- Location: LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES, KEFLAVIK, ICELAND, UNKNOWN LOCATIONS
- City: LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES, KEFLAVIK, ICELAND, UNKNOWN LOCATIONS
- Country: USA
- Topics: Economic Events,Equities Markets,United States
- Reuters ID: LVA00AELTDNBB
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Universal Hydrogen, a U.S. firm that aims to do for clean fuel what Nespresso did for coffee, is poised to announce preliminary hydrogen deals with airlines including Icelandair as it looks at a possible listing as early as next year.
Europe's Airbus has captured attention with a pledge to introduce 100-seat hydrogen-powered airliners by 2035.
But founded by former Airbus technology chief Paul Eremenko, Universal Hydrogen aims to speed up the introduction of hydrogen for smaller regional airplanes to 2025 by using fuel cells fed by modular hydrogen capsules to replace their turboprop systems.
Universal Hydrogen is one of a cluster of companies flocking to efforts to decarbonise aviation and says it is trying to solve a crucial problem with the clean but highly flammable fuel: how to connect production to airports where it is needed.
In order to kickstart demand, Nespresso offered coffee makers while encouraging others to build compatible machines.
The kits include a fuel cell and electric powertrain to replace conventional turboprops built by Pratt & Whitney Canada Airlines' cost of investing in the kits can be offset against long-term contracts to supply fuel via modular capsules.
From the viewpoint of a passenger, the propellers remain while the engine architecture and fuel system behind them change, with some seats removed to fit the hydrogen capsules.
Under the tentative deals to be announced on Wednesday (July 14), details of which have been supplied to Reuters, Spanish regional airline Air Nostrum would buy 11 kits to convert current and future turboprop airplanes.
Ravn Alaska, which last year inherited part of the operations of bankrupt Alaskan regional carrier RavnAir, would buy five conversion kits under a long-term hydrogen fuel deal.
Icelandair would also buy conversion kits for its regional fleet as part of a long-term fuel supply deal.
(Production: Aleksandra Michalska)
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