22.12.2020

The first hydrogen-powered drones take to the skies in Scandinavia

This month Nordic Unmanned AS informed of its hydrogen-powered drone completing its first test flight. This marks Scandinavia’s first hydrogen drone flight. 

The Norway-based company Nordic Unmanned AS informed on Monday Dec 14th that its hydrogen fuel cell-powered Staaker BG-200 drone successfully completed its first test flight. It was equipped with a 2kW custom fuel cell system from HES and a 7,2 l pressure vessel with hydrogen at 300 bar. The company hopes the fuel system will serve as a „high endurance module”, ready to be installed on any Staaker BG-200 drone. 

– This is a significant milestone for the project – said Jørgen Apeland, R&D Engineer working on the project. – Hydrogen-powered aviation is a part of the future, and with the successful test flight today, we made an important step towards making it happen.

The project was initiated in 2018, and received funding from the Research Council of Norway. By doubling the endurance, operational efficiency, and improving range, the fuel cell-powered drones could potentially be used in various mission, which require drones to travel long distances in difficult conditions. – This is a long-term research effort from Nordic Unmanned that aligns with our goal of establishing a strong community within research and development of unmanned systems in Norway, and to advance unmanned aviation – said Knut Roar Wiig, CEO of Nordic Unmanned AS. The drone market has seen regular growth since the introduction of these vehicles to the civilian markets. Drones find usage in many different industries, from security, law enforcement, to aristic and advertising purposes. The global drone market is predicted to reach $21,47 billion by 2021.