Hydrogen-electric aviation solutions provider ZeroAvia has initiated a testing and demonstration programme of a 19-seat aircraft in the US.

The company launched the programme after receiving a second twin-engine 19-seat Dornier 228 aircraft at its headquarters in Hollister, California.

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ZeroAvia plans to integrate a system developed in the UK HyFlyer II project into a similar type of aircraft, which will be used to test new components and integrations.

It will also serve as a testbed for working with the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) ahead of the ZA600 engine’s planned certification in 2024.

The hydrogen-electric aviation solutions provider plans to create a hybrid engine configuration, featuring ZeroAvia’s hydrogen-electric powertrain as well as a conventional engine in the aircraft.

This aircraft conversion process is projected to take around three to four months.

Once configured, the flight will enter the testing and demonstration programme, which will cover passenger, cargo and industrial purposes.

ZeroAvia founder and CEO Val Miftakhov said: “This new project in California will allow us to use architectures from our Hyflyer II initiative, where we are working with the same aircraft, and apply those lessons as we further test and demonstrate the system across a number of different use cases.

“Ultimately, this will help us optimise our zero-emission powertrain design ahead of certification.

“This year we will have two demonstration aircraft flying on two continents powered by our hydrogen-electric powertrains, which will further help us secure partner and customer commitments across the worldwide aviation industry.”

Furthermore, ZeroAvia will expand its Hollister facility to ensure sufficient employees and resources to attain its milestones.