Hybrid planes to run on hydrogen fuel cells


EasyJet announced plans to trial the use of hydrogen fuel cells on their planes.

The concept, which could convert their entire fleet of ordinary planes into hybrids without having to purchase new aircraft, could save a potential 50,000 tons of fuel and corresponding CO2 emissions each year.
The concept relies on hydrogen fuel cells which would be stored in the aircraft hold, and would allow a plane to taxi to and from the runway without using any fuel. As 4% of the airline’s fuel is consumed during taxiing, that comes out as a considerable saving.
The cells would capture energy from the aircraft braking on landing, and would charge lightweight batteries when the plane is on the ground, negating the aircraft’s need to use jet fuel when taxiing.
The only waste the hydrogen fuel cell would produce would be clean water, which easyJet could theoretically use to refill the aircraft’s water system.
Though easyJet plans to trial the technology this year, Ian Davies, easyJet’s head of engineering, notes it’s a long road ahead before the full easyJet fleet will be carrying the cells.
Source: CNN

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