At Airbus, we have the ambition to develop the world’s first zero-emission commercial aircraft by 2035. Hydrogen propulsion will help us to deliver on this ambition. Our ZEROe concept aircraft enable us to explore a variety of configurations and hydrogen technologies that will shape the development of our future zero-emission aircraft.

Hydrogen propulsion to power future aircraft

All three ZEROe concepts are hybrid-hydrogen aircraft. They are powered by hydrogen combustion through modified gas turbine engines. Liquid hydrogen is used as fuel for combustion with oxygen.

In addition, hydrogen fuel cells create electrical power that complements the gas turbine, resulting in a highly efficient hybrid-electric propulsion system. All of these technologies are complementary, and the benefits are additive.

In 2022, we launched our ZEROe demonstrator with the aim to test hydrogen combustion technology on an A380 multimodal platform. Through future ground and flight testing, we expect to achieve a mature technology readiness level for a hydrogen-combustion propulsion system by 2025.

ZEROe concept aircraft


Airbus ZEROe turbofan concept


Two hybrid-hydrogen turbofan engines provide thrust. The liquid hydrogen storage and distribution system is located behind the rear pressure bulkhead.


Two hybrid-hydrogen turboprop engines, which drive eight-bladed propellers, provide thrust. The liquid hydrogen storage and distribution system is located behind the rear pressure bulkhead.

Blended-Wing Body (BWB)

The exceptionally wide interior opens up multiple options for hydrogen storage and distribution. Here, the liquid hydrogen storage tanks are stored underneath the wings. Two hybrid-hydrogen turbofan engines provide thrust.

Introducing ZEROe animation with fast facts

ZEROe infographic

Latest news

ZEROe concept aircraft formation flight
Airbus invests in world’s largest clean hydrogen infrastructure fund managed by Hy24
Airbus has joined the world’s largest clean hydrogen infrastructure investment fund, managed by Hy24 - a joint venture between Ardian, a world-leading private investment house and FiveTHydrogen, an investment manager specialising in clean hydrogen investments.
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Airbus to take up the hydrogen contrail characterisation challenge
Airbus UpNext, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Airbus, has revealed a flight test programme to study the contrails produced by a hydrogen combustion engine as part the Company’s ZEROe roadmap. The project, named “Blue Condor”, will launch two modified Arcus gliders, one equipped with a hydrogen combustion engine and one equipped with a conventional kerosene-powered combustion engine, in order to compare contrails emitted at high altitudes.
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Could an open fan engine cut carbon emissions for more sustainable aviation?
The technologies being developed for the next-generation fuel-efficient propulsion systems – and whose progress Airbus follows closely – are taking shape at all the big aero-engine makers, here we focus on one of these: CFM International’s “open fan” technology.
Read more

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