Special Report: An oversubscribed capital raise shows investors have confidence in Aviation H2’s plans to build Australia’s first hydrogen powered-plane.
Investors have clearly shown they believe in Aviation H2’s engineering-first approach after backing an initial capital raising to fund the planning study for the development of the green energy jet engine plane.
Director, Dr Helmut Mayer, says he is delighted but not surprised by the response given the urgent need to decarbonise the aviation industry and the comprehensive design-led engineering process they are following.
“Hydrogen offers the first true pathway to decarbonising this sector, which excites the market,” he added.
Aviation H2 is firmly of the belief that Australia has the opportunity to become a global leader in this space, which is projected to reach US$174bn ($243.6bn) by 2040.
The company is looking to achieve this by developing a state-of-the-art method for converting a traditional aircraft into a hydrogen-fuelled plane, allowing potential customers to modify existing aircraft rather than investing in an entirely new fleet.
“One of the most critical features of our work is to ensure we use existing, and certified, technology as much as possible. We will start with an existing aircraft and retain as much of the base certification as possible. Making use of established technologies and infrastructure will also be important to offer our customers as much as possible of what they are already familiar with and what they have already invested in.”
“This he something that is really resonating with investors as it shows an achievable pathway to transforming an industry and generating revenue,” he added.
Aviation H2 is currently testing a variety of options for carbon free flight and will present the most commercially viable option to its board in mid-March. They expect to have a plane in the sky within the next 18 months.
Hydrogen to the rescue
Hydrogen is widely seen as the fuel of the future that will complement batteries as the world shifts towards net zero emissions.
While batteries and electric vehicles have taken an apparent early lead in the consumer vehicles segment, hydrogen has been touted as the better option for commercial and heavier vehicles.
This is due to a combination of the mass required for batteries and their long recharge time, against the ability of hydrogen fuel cell powered vehicles to be quickly refuelled – an undeniable benefit for vehicles which need to be on road to perform their jobs.
However, there is one transportation segment that is hydrogen’s for the winning and that’s aviation, a sector that makes up 2% of global emissions.
While batteries are certainly viable if you’re talking about propeller driven planes, they don’t even come into consideration for long-range flights.
Barring any major technological breakthroughs, batteries are simply too heavy for long-range aircraft. This means green hydrogen is the only viable option for zero emissions, long-distance.
There’s still some work required before it’s viable, but hydrogen’s energy density makes it the only real alternative to jet fuel.