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Stralis to showcase its hydrogen electric aircraft at Gold Coast conference

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Green hydrogen-electric aircraft pioneer Stralis Aircraft will display its Beechcraft Bonanza hydrogen-electric ground test bed, otherwise known as ‘Clyde’, at the Regional Aviation Association of Australia Convention 2024 to be held in March in the Gold Coast, Queensland.

The Bonanza A36 fuselage has been retrofitted with a hydrogen-electric propulsion system which completed high-power engine testing in December, and provides the foundation for Stralis Aircraft’s planned flight testing later this year in another Bonanza A36, known as ‘Bonnie’.

Stralis’s stated mission is to ‘decarbonise air travel, improve passenger experience and create a world class aircraft manufacturer in Australia’.

The company sees green hydrogen as a fundamentally clean solution that is carbon-free, lightweight, and economical.

The company’s first product will be a retrofitted Beech 1900D, with the conventional turbine engine and kerosene fuel system replaced with Stralis’s novel Hydrogen Electric Propulsion System and liquid hydrogen storage tanks.

Retrofitting an existing airframe is cheaper and faster to market than a new design, offering an aircraft familiar to the regional aviation community, without radically changing operations. However, Stralis is also working on a clean sheet regional airliner design.

Based on practical experience with alternative power systems, Stralis believes that hydrogen electric propulsion is the most commercially viable, sustainable solution for regional and domestic aviation in Australia.

The Beech 1900D-HE is anticipated to have a cost per available seat kilometre (CASK) on par with a conventional aircraft in 2026 and 25 per cent cheaper by 2035.

The company intends to obtain a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) for its product with CASA and the FAA.

Stralis is part of the Hydrogen Flight Alliance, that brings together ten leading organisations to help achieve the first commercial hydrogen-electric flight in Australia with launch customer Skytrans Airlines, between Brisbane and Gladstone in 2026.

Further reading:
Stralis Aircraft plans hydrogen powered aircraft

Picture: Regional Aviation Association of Australia/Stralis Aviation’s ‘Clyde’ test bed

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