ZeroAvia Bets On Hydrogen For Electric Air Travel

Is hydrogen the best path to zero emission flight?

When I first sat down with ZeroAvia founder, Valery Miftakhov, to talk about his newest venture I admit I was a little skeptical.

That’s because we were there to talk about hydrogen fuel cells being used to power commercial aircraft in two to three years time. I’m not a big fan of hydrogen-powered cars for a number of reasons, the biggest being I don’t believe we’ll ever build out a hydrogen refueling infrastructure that could refuel the millions of cars on the roads. We’d basically need to replace the 168,000 gas stations in the US with H2 stations, which cost between 1.5 and 2 million dollars each.  It would just cost way too much to do so, and who would pay for them?

Couple that with the fact that electricity is already ubiquitous – we just need to install the charging stations. That advantage alone is enough to propel battery-electric vehicles over HFC cars. However, at the same time, I also thought hydrogen fuel cells may be one of the answers for long haul trucking. There wouldn’t need to be many H2 stations installed; just a couple hundred across the country in strategic truck stop locations might be enough.

ZeroAvia’s founder, Valery Miftakhov