The Corona crisis has plunged international air traffic into a huge crisis. Because almost all airlines worldwide are struggling with economic problems, no new aircraft are currently being ordered. However, there is still hope that it is only a temporary condition. After the end of the pandemic, according to this reading, the number of passengers will again reach the level of before the crisis. Consequently, the demand for new aircraft would then also rise again. However, this would not solve all problems for the aircraft manufacturer. Because even before the corona pandemic, the industry was criticized. Climate protectors even coined the term “flight shame” and sharply criticized the climate footprint of air travel.
The corona crisis should not have any impact on research
In the long term, the industry must be able to find solutions here. Airbus therefore announced some time ago that it would work on three models with integrated fuel cells. Two of these designs are based on the classic one-fuselage and two-wing design. The third variant is a so-called flying wing. In the course of the Corona crisis, Airbus is now also struggling with massive problems. The company's German boss, André Walter, has now confirmed that the development work on the hydrogen aircraft will remain largely unaffected. He also confirmed the goal of bringing one of the planned models onto the market by 2035. This could help to significantly reduce climate emissions from the aviation sector.
Only green hydrogen is really climate-friendly
However, three requirements must be met for this. First of all, the aircraft must be competitively priced. Because only if airlines buy and use the aircraft will the sustainability effect arise. This in turn will probably only happen if the necessary infrastructure can be created at as many relevant airports as possible. Or to put it another way: there must be sufficient hydrogen filling stations for aircraft. The hydrogen itself must also be produced sustainably. This means that only renewable energies are used in the energy-intensive manufacturing process. The term “green hydrogen” has established itself for this. Only this is really sustainable and can make a serious contribution to climate protection. The problem: Currently there is simply not enough of it.
Via: Süddeutsche Zeitung