Hydrogen is a high-potential technology with a specific energy-per-unit mass that is three times higher than traditional jet fuel. If generated from renewable energy through electrolysis, it emits no CO2 emissions, thereby enabling renewable energy to potentially power large aircraft over long distances but without the undesirable by-product of CO2 emissions.
Because hydrogen has a lower volumetric energy density, the visual appearance of future aircraft will likely change. This is to better accommodate hydrogen storage solutions that will be bulkier than existing jet fuel storage tanks.
Airbus is currently a member of the Hydrogen Council to benefit from the huge cross-industry experience on hydrogen.
Hydrogen has been safely used in the aerospace and automobile industries for decades. The aviation industry’s challenge now is to take this zero-emission energy carrier and adapt it to commercial aviation’s needs.
At Airbus, we see two primary uses for hydrogen:
We expect to make the necessary decisions on the best combination of hydrogen technologies by 2025.
Renewable hydrogen is expected to be a solution for several industries to meet their climate targets. And we believe the aviation industry should be no exception: it is estimated that hydrogen has the potential to reduce aviation’s CO2 emissions by up to 50%.
We collaborate with a variety of industry players, including energy providers and airports, to ensure hydrogen can help us to take significant steps towards climate-neutral aviation.