Phoenix: A Prototype of the First Liquid-Hydrogen-Fueled Aircraft

A group of students from the Netherlands developed a prototype of the world's first liquid-hydrogen-fueled aircraft. Phoenix will take to the skies in the summer of 2021. According to the developers, the full-size aircraft will be able to cover 2,000 kilometers, spending as few as 10 liters of hydrogen fuel.

According to the researchers, hydrogen gas outperforms lithium-ion batteries in energy density. This fuel is well suited for short-range and medium-range aircrafts. But for large transcontinental liners that are responsible for the increased carbon dioxide emissions, only liquid hydrogen is suitable.

In the meantime, its smaller prototype will go to the sky. Its copy weighing 50 kg will be equipped with a cryogenic tank designed for 1 liter of fuel. Hydrogen is stored at -253 °C there. Before getting into the fuel cell, the fuel undergoes a complex heating process.

The first flight of a full-fledged aircraft will take place in 2024.

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