Log in to use our free company, program and sector update tracker feature.
 

Front page

First flight powered by a fuel cell: BASF components show potential for new applications in airplanes

• Stuttgart, September 30, DLR presented first manned airplane that can start and fly exclusively with a fuel cell

• Fuel cell technology based on Celtec®-materials by BASF

Yesterday evening (09/30/08) at the Stuttgart airport, the German Aerospace Center (DLR) presented the first manned airplane that can take-off and fly exclusively with a fuel cell. The innovative fuel cell, based on a high temperature polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM), generates power for the electric engine of the motor glider Antares DLR-H2. The aim of the project is to evaluate the potential of the technology for future applications in commercial aircraft.

In airplanes on ground, turbines or ancillary aggregates generate the energy for air conditioning. During flight, a part of the energy generated in the main turbines is used for a variety of electrical applications as well as for air conditioning. In the future, fuel cells could be an environmentally sound and energy efficient alternative for an aircraft's electrical requirements. As an auxiliary power supply, a fuel cell would generate electrical power, heat and even potable water for on-board usage. Thus, fuel cells would help reduce weight and electrical power failure risk as several distributed fuel cells replace the turbine generators. For the foreseeable future fuel cells are not expected to be used for large commercial aircraft propulsion.

Before being adapted for aircraft, however, the technology needs further development and testing. The DLR is a leading partner for the aircraft industry for this effort. First results from the DLR testing demonstrate excellent performance of the high temperature PEM fuel cells even under difficult low pressure conditions. This technology is based on Celtec®-membrane electrode assemblies (MEA) by BASF, a technology easily integrated into aircraft auxiliary power fuel cells.

Three partners are cooperating in the evaluation of the high temperature PEM fuel cell: BASF, as manufacturer of the only commercial membrane electrode assembly for this fuel cell type; the Danish company Serenergy A/S, supplier of the compact, air-cooled stack; and, DLR, responsible for the integration of the stack in the fuel cell system and subsequently in the airplane. DLR will also conduct the testing according to the special requirements of aviation.

High temperature PEM fuel cells operate at 120 to 180°C, need no humidification, require only a simple cooling system, offer a broad operating window and tolerate impurities in the hydrogen fuel gas. The latter characteristic is especially important if, in the future, impure hydrogen is sourced from jet fuel reformation on board the aircraft.

For further information and photos: www.dlr.de/en/ www.basf-fuelcell.com/en www.serenergy.dk

Press release issued by BASF New Business GmbH on October 1, 2008

 

 Contact details from our directory:
DLR - German Aerospace Center Fuel Cells, Testing Services, Research/Consulting Services, Composite Design Consultants, Flight Simulators, Instrument Landing Systems, Prototyping
BASF New Business GmbH Fuel Cells, Generating Systems, Electrical Wire & Cable, Superconducting Materials

 

 Related directory sectors:
Electrical Power Systems
Design

Enhanced listings:


Ascent Aerospace
Ascent Aerospace is the leading provider of aerospace tooling systems, assembly automation and factory integration.

Airmo Inc. Pressure Technologies
Airmo manufactures systems and tools for hydrostatic testing, end forming, tube expansion, and high-pressure accessories to 60,000psi (4,137bar).

Bandy Manufacturing
Bandy Manufacturing is the leading supplier of standard and custom hinges to the aerospace industry.

AMETEK PDS
Global design and manufacturer of components and systems to the aerospace & defense industry for over 80 years.

Alarin Aircraft Hinge, Inc.
A full-service manufacturer and supplier of high-quality engineered metal hinges for the worldwide aerospace industry.

See our advertising tariff.

 

8
data pages remaining in monthly quota for non-subscribers

© Airframer Limited, operated under licence by Stansted News Limited 2019. Terms & Conditions of reading. Privacy policy