Cranfield and EVIA AERO Collaborate to Develop Hydrogen-Powered Airliner

EVIA AERO and Cranfield Aerospace are working together to develop a hydrogen-powered 19-seat aircraft


EVIA AERO has announced an agreement with Cranfield Aerospace Solutions (CAeS) to order 15 hydrogen modification kits and ten 19-seat aircraft with the companies working together towards zero-emission flights.

The order adds five more hydrogen fuel-cell based conversion kits for the 9-seat Britten Norman Islander aircraft to its existing Letter of Intent (LOI) with Cranfield. This takes the total to 15 modification kits plus supplementary type certificates (STCs) to be supplied by CAeS to EVIA AERO. In addition, EVIA AERO has also signed a separate LOI for the supply of ten, 19-seat passenger aircraft to be powered by a scaled-up version of CAeS’ HFC based propulsion system.

At Farnborough Airshow 2022, CAeS outlined its strategy to reinvigorate whole aircraft design and manufacture in the UK, including the development of a larger propulsion system based on the system in development today. Firstly, the system is expected to be retrofitted into a more powerful, longer range platform before moving onto clean sheet aircraft, optimised around the novel propulsion system. It has not yet been determined whether the aircraft ordered by Evia Aero will be a modification to an existing design or a new concept aircraft.

Included in the terms for the 19-seat passenger aircraft is the collaboration between EVIA AERO and CAeS on the development of performance specifications for this aircraft type, and on maintenance requirements for the new hydrogen aircraft.

CAeS CEO Paul Hutton said: “We have developed a fantastic relationship with EVIA AERO and are delighted that their confidence in CAeS’ capabilities continues to grow with the signing of additional orders for 9-seat Britten-Norman Islander modification kits and our future 19-seat aircraft. By working together, we can make zero-emissions flight a reality.”

Florian Kruse, EVIA AERO Founder & CEO added: “Our joint mission with CAeS for sustainable aviation has been very successful in recent months. More and more airports are committing to our system, which is based on the entire value chain of sustainable aviation. To meet the needs of the markets for the future, we have decided to order more conversion kits, and to set out with Cranfield Aerospace for a future with 19-seaters for regional traffic. As it stands, our order book is complete for the rest of the decade.”

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