The team at AGS, which operates Aberdeen, Glasgow and Southampton airports, will work closely with ZeroAvia’s airport infrastructure team to assess the opportunities for hydrogen production onsite as well as exploring potential commercial routes.
Switching some routes to aircraft powered by ZeroAvia’s hydrogen-electric powertrain aims to significantly reduce AGS’ Scope 3 carbon emissions from aircraft and reduce noise and air quality impacts locally. AGS will also explore how hydrogen can be used to remove emissions across ground operations.
ZeroAvia will share its experience in developing and operating its Hydrogen Airport Refuelling Ecosystem (HARE) at Cotswold Airport, Gloucestershire. The partners will work towards a flight demonstration powered by ZeroAvia’s ZA600 600kW hydrogen-electric engine, which is on a path towards certification by 2025. Commercial routes from Glasgow could follow soon after.
The agreement will form part of AGS Airports’ drive to reach net zero carbon emissions by the middle of the next decade.
“In recent months we have stepped up our work with airports significantly to better understand the operational needs and requirements for hydrogen as a fuel,” said Arnab Chatterjee, VP Infrastructure at ZeroAvia.
Minister for transport Jenny Gilruth described the development as ‘encouraging’, commenting: “Many of the routes that operate from Glasgow and Aberdeen to airports across the Highlands and Islands are served by small aircraft and real social, economic and environmental benefits could be delivered by cleaner, quieter and lower cost aircraft. I congratulate AGS Airports and ZeroAvia on this partnership and will follow its progress with interest.”
According to ZeroAvia, zero-emission route flights will better connect Scotland’s major major cities to remote areas in the Highlands and Islands, but also to other parts of the UK within the next few years. Aircraft relevant to ZeroAvia’s first commercial offering (ZA600) already operate from Glasgow, and there is a potential to expand zero-emission flights across the AGS group to Aberdeen and Southampton.
The ZA600 is designed to power 9-19 seat aircraft up to 300 nautical miles and will soon be flight tested for the first time in a 19-seat Dornier 228.
ZeroAvia’s mission is to deliver hydrogen-electric engines in every aircraft.