GKN Aerospace to develop engine subsystems for hydrogen-propulsion in medium range aircraft

GKN Aerospace to develop engine subsystems for hydrogen-propulsion in medium range aircraft

GKN Aerospace is leading a Swedish national collaboration programme called “H2JET” that will develop important engine subsystems for hydrogen-propulsion for medium range civil aircraft.

The two-year project, which started in July, will see GKN Aerospace collaborate with the Swedish Energy Agency, Chalmers University of Technology, Lund University, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, University West, Research institutes of Sweden (RISE) and Oxeon.

Hydrogen is expected to play a key role in the decarbonisation strategy of aviation as it can power aircraft efficiently, leaving water as the only by-product.

Power can be generated by either direct combustion, which the H2JET project will focus on, or by generating onboard electrical power by use of a fuel cell, the focus on GKN Aerospace’s other project dubbed “H2GEAR”.

Read more: Plans for hydrogen-powered aircraft revealed – and it could be in service by 2026

Read more: Airbus unveils three hydrogen-powered aircraft concepts

Whilst H2GEAR explores a liquid hydrogen propulsion system for sub-regional aircraft, H2JET will explore hydrogen combustion powered turboprop or turbofan engines for the single aisle market for potential entry into service on intra-European routes in 2035.

H2JET is expected to put GKN Aerospace at the heart of the technology developments needed for the future of more sustainable aviation.

This could create a new generation of clean air travel that eliminates carbon emissions.

As well as this, the H2JET project will also look to speed up the development of vital international engine and aircraft demonstrator programmes, such as the Clean Aviation Partnership in the recently launched EU framework programme Horizon Europe.

Henrik Runnemalm, Vice-President of GKN Aerospace Global Technology Centre, said, “We are excited by this project and with the support from Swedish Energy Agency which makes it possible.

“We will be able to build on our long experience of hydrogen technology from Europe’s Ariane rocket launcher, as well as our unique capabilities in light-weight design and advanced manufacturing technology to help shape a sustainable future for aviation.”

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