• H2 Powered Drone: 3.5 Hour Flight Time

    From Larry Dighera@21:1/5 to All on Sat Dec 19 11:19:37 2020
    H2 Powered Drone: 3.5 Hour Flight Time
    VIDEO: https://youtu.be/lzvsctwbL2c


    TU Delft maritime hydrogen drone flies longer and greener

    A drone that can fly sustainably for long distances over land and
    water, and can land almost anywhere, will be able to serve a wide
    range of applications. There are already drones that fly using 'green' hydrogen, but they either fly very slowly or cannot land vertically.
    That’s why researchers at TU Delft together with the Royal Netherlands
    Navy and the Dutch Coastguard service developed a hydrogen-powered
    drone that is capable of vertical take-off and landing whilst also
    being able to fly horizontally efficiently for several hours, much
    like regular aircraft. The drone uses a combination of hydrogen and
    batteries as its power source. The first successful tests were held in
    one of the most challenging scenarios: from a ship sailing on the open
    seas. This also brings maritime applications within reach and
    represents a new step in making aviation more sustainable.

    A drone that flies over densely populated areas or the open sea has to
    be able to take off and land vertically, for example on an apartment
    complex or the afterdeck of a ship. This drains a lot of power from
    the battery and is detrimental to the flight duration. Fossil fuels
    are often used to increase aircraft range and endurance, though this
    is not a particularly sustainable solution. Moreover, to fly
    efficiently over long distances, a drone needs wings, however, fixed
    wing drones require additional facilities to land them, such as a
    runway or a net . So all in all up to now no drones have been
    developed that can sustainably fly long distances and still take off
    and land almost anywhere.

    Bart Remes, Project Manager of the Micro Aerial Vehicle Lab (MAVLab)
    at TU Delft: “That is why we developed a drone that can take off and
    land vertically using hydrogen plus a battery set, and that during the horizontal hydrogen-powered flight can recharge the battery via a fuel
    cell, ready for the vertical landing. The fixed-wing design and the
    use of hydrogen means the drone can fly horizontally for hours at a

    The fully electric drone weighs 13kg and has a wingspan of three
    metres. It is also very safe: it is powered by 12 motors so even if
    several motors fail, it can still land safely on the afterdeck of a
    ship, for example.

    The drone is equipped with a 300 bar, 6.8 litre carbon composite
    hydrogen cylinder. The cylinder feeds hydrogen at low pressure to the
    800w fuel cell that converts it to electricity. The only emissions are
    oxygen and water vapour. In addition to the fuel cell that supplies
    electricity to the motors, there is also a set of batteries that
    together with the fuel cell provide extra power to the motors during
    the vertical take-off and landing.

    The knowledge acquired while designing the drone can be used to make
    aviation greener. Henri Werij, Dean of the Faculty of Aerospace
    Engineering at TU Delft: “One of the most important aspects of this
    research project is the hydrogen-powered flight. Worldwide, hydrogen
    is seen as one of the most important contenders for achieving a green
    and sustainable aviation fuel.”

    Drones are already regularly used for flying over land, but flying
    over the sea brings many extra challenges. Wind, salt water, a moving
    ship with limited take-off and landing facilities, these are all
    dynamic conditions that put high demands on the drone. This is why the
    TU Delft hydrogen drone was not only tested in a wind tunnel, but also
    on Royal Netherlands Navy and Dutch Coastguard service vessels,
    sailing on the open sea off the Dutch coast.

    Thanks to the combination of the wings and the hydrogen cylinder and
    battery, the TU Delft drone was able to stay airborne in stable flight
    for over 3.5 hours. These properties make the drone suitable for
    providing support in reconnaissance and inspection tasks.

    Commander Pieter Blank: “Introducing new technologies demands a more exploratory approach than we are used to. The current generation of
    young people grow up in this way of learning and experimenting, and
    for us they are our personnel of the future. This is why we are making
    every effort to work together with others to create operational
    applications for these technologies. As an innovator in the Royal
    Netherlands Navy and Dutch Coastguard service, I am proud of this
    cooperation with TU Delft. The development of the maritime,
    hydrogen-powered drone is a true technical breakthrough which has huge
    future potential.”

    More information
    Please check the following website for more information and
    photo/video: http://www.nederdrone.nl/

    Bart Remes, project manager Micro Air Vehicle Lab (MAVLab) TU Delft: B.D.W.Remes@tudelft.nl, +31 15 27 83707
    Ilona van den Brink (TU Delft press office): I.vandenbrink@tudelft.nl,
    +31 15 27 84259
    Fanneke Eelman-Frinks (Royal Netherlands Navy press office), f.eelman.frinks@mindef.nl, +31 6 124 18 436
    Edwin Granneman (Dutch Coast Guard Service press office), e.granneman@mindef.nl, +31 223 – 658319 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Hydrogen-powered VTOL drone flies for 3.5 hours
    By Ben Coxworth
    November 12, 2020

    A composite photo of the drone taking off from a coastguard ship
    A composite photo of the drone taking off from a coastguard shipTU

    VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) drones are quite versatile, as
    they combine the vertical flight of a helicopter with the fast and
    efficient forward flight of a fixed-wing airplane. This one features
    an extended range, thanks to a fuel cell power system.

    The experimental aircraft was developed by a team at the Netherlands'
    Delft University of Technology (TU Delft), working with colleagues
    from the Royal Netherlands Navy and the Netherlands Coastguard. It has
    a 3-meter (9.8 ft) wingspan, weighs 13 kg (29 lb), and features 12 motor/propeller units distributed on its two wings. Even if several of
    the motors fail, it can reportedly still fly and land successfully.

    The drone is also a "tail-sitter"-type VTOL. This means that when
    taking off and landing, its body is angled upwards, allowing the
    propellers to work more like a helicopter's rotor blades. For going
    into forward flight, the thrust is electronically redistributed
    between the 12 motors, causing the aircraft to level out into a
    horizontal orientation.

    Another multi-exposure take-off shot
    Another multi-exposure take-off shot
    TU Delft
    It additionally incorporates an 800-watt fuel cell, which is fed by an
    onboard 300-bar (4,351-psi), 6.8-liter carbon composite hydrogen
    cylinder. In forward flight, the motors are powered solely by that
    fuel cell, which also charges an onboard battery pack. For take-offs
    and landings – which require considerably more power than cruising –
    both the fuel cell and the battery power the motors.

    In a recent trial conducted off the Dutch coast, the drone took off
    from the deck of a coastguard ship, then proceeded to fly over the
    open ocean for 3.5 hours before landing back on the vessel. It is
    hoped that the aircraft could ultimately find use in applications such
    as reconnaissance and inspection.

    You can see it in action, in the video below.

    Source: DU Delft

    Novel versatile hydrogen drone developed by TUDelft - MAVLab [EN]

    --- SoupGate-Win32 v1.05
    * Origin: fsxNet Usenet Gateway (21:1/5)