European consortium to study the creation of the first aviation hydrogen hub in Spain

July 10, 2024
Airbus, Aena, Air Nostrum, Iberia, Exolum, and Repsol aim to tackle the primary challenges of deploying hydrogen-powered aviation in Spain.

MADRID -  Airbus, Aena, Air Nostrum, Iberia, Exolum, and Repsol are collaborating to study the creation of Spain’s first hydrogen airport hub.

The six companies aim to tackle the primary challenges of deploying hydrogen-powered aviation in Spain. This collaboration unites the entire value chain, from primary energy production to hydrogen ground operations, involving two airlines and a network of airports.

The partnership will provide a comprehensive view of integrating hydrogen-powered aircraft into the airport ecosystem, focusing on hydrogen supply, infrastructure, and ground operations. The goal is to foster and support the growth of the hydrogen aviation ecosystem in Spain.

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“At Airbus, the decarbonization of aviation is one of our most important goals and the deployment of hydrogen-powered commercial aircraft with its ecosystem is one of those key levers. Given Spain's great potential in renewables and low carbon hydrogen production, it is essential that the aviation industry as a whole collaborates to secure a future end-to-end hydrogen supply chain up to the airports,” said Karine Guenan, Airbus’ Vice President ZEROe Ecosystem.

"The decarbonization of the air transport sector is a priority for Aena. This collaboration will allow us to gain a broader understanding of how the process of supplying hydrogen to Spanish airports could materialize in the future, in order to establish a roadmap to address the main challenges presented by the introduction of this new energy vector in an airport environment," added Ana Salazar, director of sustainability at Aena.

María José Sanz, Director of Quality and Environment at Air Nostrum, explained: "Our commitment is to be at the side of the developers of new technologies aimed at decarbonizing air transport. As a regional airline, we can be relevant in the project because we have the necessary conditions to become the first implementers of hydrogen technology, thanks to the size of our aircraft and the average distance we fly."

Teresa Parejo, Iberia's Director of Sustainability, added: "Collaboration between the different actors is necessary to advance in the decarbonization of the sector. Hydrogen will foreseeably be part of the future of aviation, which will come later and will complement the development of sustainable fuels; to reach that future we must start taking the first steps now."

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