CAA launches Hydrogen Challenge for aviation

hydrogen tank and aeroplane

The UK CAA has launched the Hydrogen Challenge to understand the potential of the gas as a zero carbon emission aviation fuel.

Hydrogen as an aviation fuel is at an early stage of development, said the CAA. There is not yet a comprehensive understanding of the risks.

Sophie O’Sullivan, Head of Future Safety & Innovation at the UK Civil Aviation Authority, said, “The project will help facilitate efforts to move towards a net-zero aviation sector by supporting the industry to explore how feasible the introduction of hydrogen is and how we can make sure regulation is fit for purpose.”

The Hydrogen Challenge is funded with nearly £940,000 from the Regulators’ Pioneer Fund, which is overseen by the Department for Science, Innovation, and Technology.

To coincide with the launch of the Hydrogen Challenge, the UK Civil Aviation Authority will soon open applications for a new Regulatory Sandbox to assist applicants to run hydrogen trials and maximise regulatory readiness.

Sandbox services are offered prior to the start of the process for regulatory certification, which will help accelerate the introduction of new technologies.

The Hydrogen Challenge runs until 28 February 2025. More information and how to apply can be found out by emailing [email protected]

ZeroAvia Caravan

ZeroAvia is developing electric powerplants using hydrogen to produce electricity

Five facts about hydrogen

  • Hydrogen (H) wants to combine with oxygen (O) to form water, H2O
  • The name hydrogen comes from Greek meaning ‘maker of water’
  • It’s colourless, odourless, tasteless… and flammable
  • Hydrogen has the simplest possible molecule: two protons and two electrons
  • It’s also the smallest molecule and thus challenging to store and supply

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