Planned zero emissions hybrid engine could save 50,000 tonnes of fuel a year
easyJet, Europe’s leading airline, has unveiled plans for a revolutionary zero emissions hydrogen fuel system for its aircraft which could save around 50,000 tonnes of fuel and the associated CO2 emissions per year. A trial of the technology is set to take place later this year.
The airline has taken inspiration from students at Cranfield University, a global leader in education and research in technology and management, who were asked to develop ideas for what air travel might look like in twenty years’ time, as part of a competition to celebrate easyJet’s 20th birthday. easyJet will now work with its industry partners and suppliers to apply the cutting edge technology much sooner.
The hybrid plane concept utilises a hydrogen fuel cell stowed in the aircraft's hold. This innovative zero-emissions system allows energy to be captured as the aircraft brakes on landing and is used to charge the system’s lightweight batteries (much like the Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) found in Formula 1 cars).