Birmingham Airport Partners With ZeroAvia For Zero-Emission Passenger Flights

Birmingham Airport is aiming to become the first in the UK to operate commercial zero-emission hydrogen-fueled flights with ZeroAvia.

Credit: Birmingham Airport
Sergey Kiselev (left), ZeroAvia's chief business officer, and Simon Richards, Birmingham Airport's chief finance and sustainability officer, stand in front of ZeroAvia's modified Dornier 228.

Birmingham Airport (BHX) has signed a partnership agreement with ZeroAvia to focus on introducing on-airfield hydrogen refueling and regular domestic passenger flights using zero-emission aircraft.

ZeroAvia’s first trial flight of a 19-seater passenger aircraft powered by hydrogen fuel cells took place in January. With the backing of Amazon, Bill Gates and Shell, the startup is working on bringing to market a zero-emission system capable of flying a 20-seat aircraft 300 nm by 2025.

The technology would open-up the potential for service from Birmingham to destinations including Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Belfast, the Isle of Man and Dublin by the middle of this decade—so long as those airports have hydrogen refueling infrastructure.

ZeroAvia is also seeking to get an emissions-free 80-seat aircraft flying up to 1,000 nm by 2027, enabling the possibility of round-trip domestic flights from BHX and some short-haul European routes.

“Birmingham Airport can be a central hub in a green flight network in the UK, given that any domestic mainland destination will be reachable from the airport using our first systems in 2025,” said Arnab Chatterjee, ZeroAvia's VP of infrastructure.

ZeroAvia’s prototype was successfully test-flown at its base in Gloucestershire, England, in January. The business has already secured experimental certificates for its two-prototype aircraft from the UK CAA and U.S. FAA.

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