Universal Hydrogen completes AmpCart H2 demo

Universal Hydrogen Co. has completed the first operational demonstration of the Oshkosh AeroTech AmpCart H2 at Hawthorne Airport in Los Angeles.

The mobile AmpCart H2 prototype and portable hydrogen storage modules were used to charge two DHL electric tractors, and was witnessed by airline and leasing representatives from DHL, Mercury GSE, Fortbrand, Xcēd, and American Airlines.

Hydrogen modules are fuelled with green hydrogen off-airport and transferred to the airport landside with existing intermodal freight.

The AmpCart H2 provides a near-term solution to the shortage of charging infrastructure for electric ground support equipment at airports, removing the need for need for purpose-built hydrogen fuelling infrastructure. 

The solution is now on track for deployment by the end of 2024.

Hawthorne is the fifth airport where Universal Hydrogen has successfully utilised hydrogen on airport grounds, paving the way towards decarbonised airport ground operations and hydrogen acceptance as an aviation fuel.

“In the last 10 years or so, there has been a major push among airlines, airports, and ground services providers to electrify airport GSE but unfortunately the charging infrastructure is significantly lagging, leading to adoption of diesel generators for charging of electric GSE,” said Arnaud Namer, Chief Operating Officer, Universal Hydrogen. “We aim to change that by providing a clean, hydrogen-powered mobile charging solution for airports.”

“Since Universal Hydrogen’s inception we have captured the attention of the industry and partnered with numerous regional airlines to deliver a zero-emissions solution in the mid-2020s,” said Rod Williams, Chief Commercial Officer, Universal Hydrogen. “For operators of larger aircraft, however, a hydrogen airplane solution won’t enter the market until the mid-2030s, yet they still have a clear and urgent need to decarbonise their operations. As these airlines shifted their focus to non-aviation emissions produced by the operation of GSE, we identified the ways in which our unique modular technology could be adapted to meet this need.”

“True to our name, we see modular delivery of hydrogen solving the infrastructure problem for hydrogen adoption in a multitude of different applications,” said Paul Eremenko, Chief Executive Officer, Universal Hydrogen. “Doing so for charging of electric GSE is an important early step in the decarbonisation of the overall aviation ecosystem, while also reducing risk and serving as an important proof point several years ahead of our regional aviation product.”

Mercury GSE was excited to provide support and assistance, including deploying a Textron GSE TUG UV2 electric baggage tractor, during the successful operational demonstration of Universal Hydrogen Co.'s AmpCart H2 product.

"We're proud to have been part of this demonstration, witnessing the capabilities of the AmpCart H2 to industry leaders, including representatives from DHL, American Airlines, and others. Stay tuned for more updates on how Mercury GSE is providing a supporting role in advancing decarbonization efforts within the aviation ecosystem," said a Mercury GSE spokesman.


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