ZeroAvia taps Octopus Hydrogen to fuel zero carbon aircraft plans


Octopus is set to supply 100 per cent green hydrogen to fuel the development of zero emission, hydrogen-electric aircraft at ZeroAvia's research and development centre in the Cotswolds, as part of an agreement announced last week between the two firms.

Under the deal, Octopus Hydrogen - Octopus Energy Group's newly-established hydrogen arm - is set to supply 250kg per day of green, fuel cell grade, high-pressure hydrogen produced via renewable electricity to delivery to ZeroAvia's mobile aircraft refuelling unit.

The additional green hydrogen from Octopus will supplement ZeroAvia's existing on-site electrolysis system at Cotswold Airport near Kemble in order to produce enough of the zero carbon fuel to power its UK government-backed HyFlyer II development project.

The pioneering project is geared at developing a 600kW hydrogen-electric fuel cell power train, that can be used to power a 19-seat, zero emission aircraft with a 500 nautical mile range, which ZeroAvia aims to bring to market in 2024.

The company has already successfully tested a six-seater hydrogen fuel cell plane, having completed its first test flight from Cranfield Airport last year. ZeroAvia has since secured major investment from a host of firms including British Airways, Amazon and Shell.

Sergey Kiselev, ZeroAvia's Europe vice president, welcomed the deal with Octopus, which he said would help to fuel the firm's development programme over the coming years.

"In order to achieve a commercially available certified zero emission hydrogen-electric aircraft powertrain we need large amounts of 100 per cent green hydrogen and we are pleased to work with a UK-leader in this field," he explained. "Hydrogen-electric aviation is the only practical path to decarbonising flight at scale, as well as removing other harmful emissions from aviation that contribute to global warming."

The deal forms part of Octopus Hydrogen's broader aim to bring to market "locally-distributed green hydrogen-as-a-service" offers for heavy goods transport, energy storage, aviation and industrial applications "to accelerate those sectors' transition to a clean and zero carbon future", it said.

"We started Octopus Hydrogen to deliver 100 per cent green hydrogen to those sectors that cannot be decarbonised through batteries alone," explained Octopus Hydrogen CEO and founder William Rowe. "Aviation is a perfect use case for green hydrogen and we are delighted to be supporting ZeroAvia over the coming years with the supply of high pressure, pure and zero carbon hydrogen."