Fuel cell stack innovator HyPoint has been acquired by ZeroAvia, the hydrogen-electric aviation pioneer developing zero-emission solutions for commercial aviation.
The acquisition adds HyPoint’s advanced high-temperature fuel cell technology – a promising avenue for increasing power output and energy density of aviation fuel cell powertrains – to ZeroAvia’s already leading expertise in developing the full powertrain to enable hydrogen-electric flight.
All 40 HyPoint team members will be integrated into ZeroAvia, working across the R&D locations in Kemble, Gloucestershire, and HyPoint’s location in Sandwich, Kent. HyPoint’s CEO Alex Ivanenko joins ZeroAvia as GM for VTOL and New Segments, to develop ZeroAvia’s rotorcraft business applications, and to explore other applications outside ZeroAvia’s core focus on fixed-wing commercial aviation.
All of HyPoint’s engineering team will join ZeroAvia’s Hydrogen Power Generation Systems (PGS) division led by Rudolf Coertze, CTO Hydrogen, combining two rare sets of exceptionally talented fuel cell researchers and engineers working in the field today.
The two companies have worked closely together on co-developing and testing HTPEM fuel cell technology as part of ZeroAvia’s powertrain development over recent years, with HyPoint relocating the bulk of its R&D into the UK in February 2022 to support the partnership. HyPoint has garnered recognition as an innovator developing technology with the potential to significantly expedite the introduction of fuel cell propulsion into larger aircraft. This early partnership was part of ZeroAvia’s work within the HyFlyer II programme, supported by the UK’s ATI Programme.
“We see this as a significant forward step for ZeroAvia, and a hugely important strategic step to strengthen our leadership position in hydrogen-electric powertrain development for aviation,” said Val Miftakhov, ZeroAvia Founder & CEO. “There are no other organizations with the breadth of expertise and world-leading IP in hydrogen-electric aviation that we now have within the company. This acquisition, together with our long-standing partnership with the leading LTPEM (low-temperature PEM) fuel cell maker PowerCell, puts us in the top position for delivering the most environmentally and economically attractive solution to aviation’s growing climate impact.”
Alex Ivanenko, former CEO of HyPoint and newly appointed GM for VTOL and New Segments at ZeroAvia, said “This acquisition is the natural next chapter in our journey, allowing us to tap into the benefits of the larger and strategic resources that ZeroAvia has to offer. It will accelerate our product development and, as a result, partners from different market segments will get mature products based on novel turbo-air cooled HTPEM hydrogen fuel cells. The team and I are excited to join forces with ZeroAvia to achieve the ambitious vision and product roadmap for zero-emission aviation.”
This new development comes on the heels of the announcement of a major deal with ZeroAvia’s long-term fuel cell partner PowerCell which will see the serial delivery of hydrogen fuel stacks beginning in 2024. Together, these moves will allow ZeroAvia to progress both LTPEM and HTPEM technologies for relevant aviation applications from a strong position of leadership.
ZeroAvia has identified hydrogen-electric powertrains—where fuel cells use hydrogen in a chemical reaction to generate electricity that powers electric motors—as the most practical, economical, and farthest reaching solution for reducing aviation’s climate change and clean air impacts.