Boeing Test First Fuel Cell, Zero-Emissions Aircraft

Finally, all of the fuel cell hype is starting to pay off

The Dimona Fuel Cell Plane is a joint venture test craft modified by Boeing Research and Intelligent Energy. The first test flight took place in Spain recently and seemed to go well in that no-one died and the thing flew for a while without mishap. We’re talking 62 mph at 3,300 feet for 20 minutes, so it’s not going to break any records, but don’t forget that this is zero-emission stuff. Gotta be a good sign. Video.

The plane is based on a two-seat Dimona motor-glider frame with a 16.3 metre (53.5 feet) wingspan. It was modified by BR&TE to incorporate a hybrid low emission engine, containing Intelligent Energy’s power dense Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) fuel cell power system and lithium-ion batteries, to power an electric motor coupled to a conventional propeller.