Published On: Sun, Jul 11th, 2021

ZeroAvia Invited to Participate in World Economic Forum

ZeroAvia was one of approximately 100 startups that work with hydrogen energy invited to the Technology Pioneer Day that the World Economic Forum sponsored on June 15, 2021. Representatives from 26 world economies took place in the one-day event. Some countries that sent representatives included the United Kingdom, the United States, the United Arab Emirates, Ethiopia, El Salvador, and Zimbabwe.

Members of the Technology Pioneers that the World Economic Forum invited included companies in the early to growth stages that have invested in technology to create hydrogen-related solutions. All of the 100 companies have real potential to make a significant and positive impact on their respective industries. The business world and larger society will also benefit from the innovations of these companies.

innovation sign

photo/ Michael Jarmoluk via pixabay.com

Three Companies Working With Hydrogen Energy Join ZeroAvia at the Forum

ZeroAvia, based in the US and UK, is currently working to replace traditional jet engines powered by fossil fuel with engines that use only hydrogen-electric power. The other companies that offer hydrogen-based solutions are:

  • Enapter, an Italian company that creates green hydrogen technology through the anion exchange membrane electrolyzer manufacturing process.
  • Hydrogenious, a German-based organization that is currently creating hydrogen value chains around the world that offer excellent performance.
  • Ionomr, which is currently developing and manufacturing membrane technology and breakthrough polymers for carbon capture storage, fuel cells, and hydrogen production.

ZeroAvia is the only company in this group dedicated exclusively to creating, testing, and implementing hydrogen-electric fuel options for the aviation industry. The 100 companies invited to the event on June 15, 2021 will also have the opportunity to participate in discussions and events sponsored by the World Economic Forum throughout the year.

ZeroAvia CEO Responds to Invitation From the World Economic Forum

Val Miftakhov founded ZeroAvia in 2017 and has served as the company’s CEO since that time. He stated that he felt personally honored to receive an invitation to participate with other innovative hydrogen businesses at the World Economic Forum. Miftakhov feels that the invitation is confirmation that ZeroAvia’s hydrogen-electric fuel cell technology is unique in the world of aviation.

According to Val Miftakhov, ZeroAvia will make a real difference in reducing the airline industry’s huge carbon emission problem. He also believes that hydrogen is the only practical way to transition aviation away from fossil fuel and the extensive carbon emissions that it contributes to the earth’s atmosphere. He ended his comments by stating that everyone at ZeroAvia feels excited about the potential of hydrogen as an energy source for the worldwide aviation industry.

About ZeroAvia

Val Miftakhov is a licensed pilot who saw the potential in hydrogen-electric fuel cells when he launched ZeroAvia four years ago. Government officials in the United Kingdom quickly noticed the new company and provided it with a $16.3 million grant in partnership with the Aerospace Technology Institute.

ZeroAvia recently completed two rounds of Series A funding to raise an additional $21.4 million. The company has raised a total of $49.7 million during its four-year existence to introduce hydrogen fuel cells to the aviation market by 2024.

Miftakhov recognized the slow deterioration of the passenger air travel experience and decided to step in to help the industry make significant improvements. With larger airports becoming the norm, passengers deal with increased crowding, longer wait times, and more invasive security protocols. These factors lead to more last-minute flights traveling shorter distances. The higher passenger concentration also results in an increased risk of contracting airborne diseases.

ZeroAvia plans to address the carbon emission problem from short-haul flights first since they produce half of all pollution in the airline industry. A short-haul flight travels less than 1,000 nautical miles to reach its final destination. Had Miftakhov not taken responsible stewardship of the environment seriously, aviation would double its carbon emissions as early as 2050.

In the fall of 2020, ZeroAvia completed its HyFlyer I project by flying an airplane using only the power of hydrogen fuel cells for a full eight minutes. The European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) assisted in ZeroAvia’s efforts by providing the necessary fuel systems for the test flight. EMEC also provided ZeroAvia with infrastructure designed specifically for airports.

The alternative aviation fuel company that Val Miftakhov leads is currently working on its HighFlyer II project. The project’s first goal is to fly a hydrogen-powered airplane with a few dozen passengers up to 500 nautical miles. By 2030, ZeroAvia intends to transport 100 passengers up to 1,000 nautical miles. While Miftakhov and his team realize that this is an ambitious goal, they are prepared to dedicate the time and resources to work toward that goal.

Hydrogen-electric fuel cells have already produced several benefits that no one in the aviation industry can deny. Compared to airplanes using traditional fossil fuels, those powered by hydrogen electricity reduce maintenance and fuel costs by up to 75 percent. These flights also achieve an average of a 50 percent reduction in overall trip costs.

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Author: Jimmy Simond

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