ZeroAvia completes first ZA600 flight test campaign


ZeroAvia has completed the first flight testing campaign of its initial prototype ZA600 at Cotswold Airport in the UK. 

The tenth test flight was completed last week, and involved a cruise test to prepare for the first cross-country flights as the next stage of testing. Over the course of the last six months, ZeroAvia has tested different areas of performance following the first flight of the system in January. The campaign has seen the aircraft fly at 5,000 feet, perform an endurance test at 23 minutes, operate in the wide temperature range from just above freezing to almost 30C and reach the maximum allowable speed under the Permit to Fly issued by the CAA.

Gabriele Teofili, head of Aircraft Integration & Testing, ZeroAvia, said: “Plenty of people go through 40 year careers without marking their name in the history books of aerospace engineering. I’m so proud that so many of the team at ZeroAvia can say that they have done that already with this first phase of test flights. This Dornier 228 will now always have a place in our hearts, but we’re excited to take it on its next adventure and head further afield.”

Throughout all phases of testing, the fuel cell power generation and electric propulsion system performed at or above expectations, said the firm. The hydrogen-electric engine has matched the power of the fossil fuel engine on the opposite wing, with the pilots able to fly with thrust generated only from the experimental propulsion system in certain tests.

Val Miftakhov, founder and CEO, ZeroAvia, said: “Zero-emission flight technologies are moving from promise to delivery and our amazing team is leading the way with this testing programme. We do not have to push the unappealing choices on passengers of paying more or flying less to deliver climate conscious air travel. We instead can adopt this technology quickly to reduce climate impact and air pollution.”

ZeroAvia’s programme is part of the HyFlyer II Project, which is has received funding from the UK Government via the Aerospace Technology Institute. UK Minister for Industry and Economic Security Nusrat Ghani said: “ZeroAvia is making fantastic progress in pioneering zero emission flight, and I want to congratulate them on another important step completed with their successful flight test campaign.

“I’m pleased that government support through the ATI Programme has helped ZeroAvia find innovative new ways to cut aviation emissions, which will help us deliver our Jet Zero Strategy and secure high-skilled green jobs in the UK.”