American Airlines invests in a company working on hydrogen for aircraft

American Airlines is investing in a company that hopes to supply hydrogen for planes, part of the airline industry’s approach to reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

American, based in Fort Worth, did not specify the amount of its investments or its stake in Universal Hydrogen Co., whose other backers include the venture capital arm of JetBlue, the venture capital arm of the automaker. of Airbus aircraft and GE Aviation, which manufactures aircraft engines.

Los Angeles-based Universal Hydrogen said it would build a distribution network to deliver hydrogen capsules to avoid having to build new refueling infrastructure at airports.

The companies said Universal Hydrogen plans to supply hydrogen for regional jets in 2025 and later for larger single-aisle jets as an auxiliary power source in the late 2020s and as a primary fuel by September. mid-2030s – an extremely ambitious timeframe.

American presented its undisclosed investment as a vote of confidence that hydrogen will become a key part of a sustainable aviation industry. In August, the company invested in ZeroAvia, a developer of hydrogen electric motors. It has also signed a memorandum of understanding that allows the airline to order up to 100 engines from ZeroAvia.

ZeroAvia is working to adapt its propulsion technology to the regional jet market.

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