As drone manufacturers search for power sources that will enable drones to fly for multiple hours — and without fears of potentially dangerous Lipo batteries — drone companies are capitalizing on the rise of hydrogen fuel cells.
Hydrogen fuel cells, which have recently rose to the mainstream vernacular for their increased testing in consumer products such as cars, are looking to make their way into more drones.
Hydrogen fuel cells are a pollution-free form of power, converting hydrogen to electricity while leaving behind nothing but water and heat. They’re environmentally friendly, allow for long flight times and can last a longer lifespan than traditional batteries, which has commercial-grade drone companies hopping on the wagon.
“Typically the energy density of hydrogen fuel cells compared to a battery is 3-4x the amount of flight time compared to Lipo batteries,” said Callie Mortimer, Director of Business Development at FlightWave Aerospace Systems. “The longer drones can fly, it makes a massive difference to what many companies are trying to achieve.”
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That means drones can not only fly longer distances, but also fly in rural areas where it is otherwise difficult to charge batteries.
FlightWave Aerospace Systems, Inc displayed its Jupiter drone, which uses a lightweight 650-W Fuel Cell Power Module, prominently at the AUVSI 2018 conference this week in Colorado. Continue reading The end of Lipo batteries? Hydrogen fuel cells take the spotlight at AUVSI