Toulouse-based H3 Dynamics has been contracted by Airbus UpNext to supply a 0.5MW hydrogen fuel cell system for the latter’s HyPower demonstrator project.

Announced at last year’s Paris air show, HyPower will see the Airbus innovations arm replace the stock auxiliary power unit (APU) of an A330-200 with a new fuel cell-based system.


Source: Airbus

Airbus UpNext will flight test the fuel cell-powered APU aboard modified A330-200

H3 Dynamics is currently finalising the 0.5MW system – which includes the fuel cell stack and parts of the balance of plant – for delivery to Airbus UpNext. Integration into the A330 will take place later this year.

To ensure the airworthy condition of the system, H3 Dynamics had to “perform deep engineering analysis and make strategic design choices” around its features, materials, control system, sensors, and overall architecture, says the company.

Ground testing of H3 Dynamics’ fuel cells have already been conducted by Airbus at the Centro Nacional de Hidrogeno in Puertollano, Spain.

AirbusUpnextH3D-c-H3 Dynamics

Source: H3 Dynamics

Ground tests of the system have taken place in Spain

Flight tests of the system are targeted for the end of 2025, during which the aircraft will operate at 25,000ft and fly for 1h with 10kg of gaseous hydrogen on board.

Airbus UpNext sees the fuel cell-based APU as reducing CO2, NOx and noise emissions over a conventionally fuelled system.