Hydrogen Fuel Cell Powered Drone

December 18, 2016 by Power Pulse1595211359

Drones are one of the top presents this Holiday Season. But almost none of them features anything advanced or novel with regards to power technology. Li-ion batteries are the almost universal choice for energy storage. That has changed. Micromulticopter Aero Technology, Co. Ltd. (MMC) offers one of the first commercially available drones to run on hydrogen using fuel cell technology.

Most drones today run on batteries that limit flight time (with a load) to about 30 minutes, depending upon the weight they carry. This has been a severe limitation for many commercial applications, as operators must switch battery packs or charge the current battery after brief flights. Hydrogen, an environmentally friendly technology, will allow drones to run up to five times longer – dramatically enhancing their commercial potential for applications like firefighting, agriculture, energy line stringing and inspection, and precision mapping. The hydrogen technology also runs at a lower temperature than existing batteries, potentially expanding applications for the new drone.

“The hydrogen application is a breakthrough technology for commercial drone applications. With flight times of over 3 hours, distances of over 100 km, and operations of as low as minus 20 degrees C many of the barriers that exist for commercial and humanitarian applications today are remove. So many applications are well suited to this technology. Precision agriculture applications for medium to large scale farms, powerline stringing and inspection, mapping and search and rescue applications – all of these are improved by longer flight times,” according to a statement from MMC.

The drone is available for shipping immediately to clients that have pre-ordered the drone; the company is planning to ramp up production to meet demand in the coming months. Hydrogen technology will be available in its own line of drones, and will be added to MMC’s current models for a variety of applications.