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ZeroAvia raises $35M more to accelerate development of 2-5MW hydrogen powertrain; United invests

As it moves closer to commercialization of its hydrogen-electric technology, ZeroAvia (earlier post) has secured a new raise of $35 million to help develop its 2-5MW zero-emission powertrain system for regional aviation. United Airlines has invested in ZeroAvia through this round, an agreement with United anticipates an order for 50 ZA2000-RJ engines, with an option for 50 more.

The ZA2000 engine family is being designed to be capable of producing between 2,000 and 5,000 kilowatts of power with a 500-mile range.

United joins an already announced new investor, Alaska Air Group (earlier post), in this round, alongside existing investors Amazon’s Climate Pledge Fund, AP Ventures, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Horizons Ventures, Summa Equity, and Shell Ventures. This brings the company’s total investment to date up to $115 million.

ZeroAvia is on track to achieve commercialization for its hydrogen propulsion technology in 2024. Initially, the company is targeting a 500-mile range in a 10-20 seat aircraft used for commercial passenger transport, package delivery, agriculture, and beyond. This funding round targets the next segment of 40-80 seat aircraft, targeting turboprops by 2026 and regional jets by 2028. The funding will also allow ZeroAvia to further ramp up presence across its US, UK, and continental Europe locations.

Hydrogen-electric engines are one of the most promising paths to zero-emission air travel for smaller aircraft, and this investment will keep United out in front on this important emerging technology. United continues to look for opportunities to not only advance our own sustainability initiatives, but also identify and help technologies and solutions that the entire industry can adopt.

—Scott Kirby, CEO of United

ZeroAvia said that it has made significant progress towards achieving its goal of zero-emission aviation over the past few weeks. This investment round follows significant commercial momentum for the company, including partnerships with Alaska Airlines, Rose Cay, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, ASL Aviation Holdings, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Regional Jet division and Rotterdam the Hague Airport.



regional aviation
Could make a comeback with electric


If they are building an airliner that has 10 to 20 passengers with a 500 mile range using hydrogen, they should look at what Bye Aerospace is building. Performance estimates for the 8-person Bye Aerospace eFlyer 800 include up to 320 knot cruise speed, 35,000 feet ceiling and 500 nm range with 45-minute IFR reserves at normal cruise speed of 280 knots with batteries and not hydrogen. They are also projecting that seat mile cost with be a quarter of that of a comparable turbojet.

The primary problem with using hydrogen is the cost of the hydrogen. There are also a number of other problems with hydrogen including the need for either high pressure or liquification and hydrogen embrittlement of steel.

And, yes, if the operating costs are a quarter of a comparable turbojet, regional aviation for both passengers and freight make more sense (and cents).


Well stated this is what this site is for not insults

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