We all know that jet engine-powered UAVs, such as the Predator Drone, are more than capable of making in excess of a thousand kilometers (over 750 miles) range, but it is never the same for “clean energy powered” drones. Well, that’s until recently.
At last month’s InterGEO 2019 in Germany, China’s MMC UAV show off the MMC UAV Hydrone Griflion H Drone which has a claimed 15-hour flight time. 15! Imagine that.
The hydrogen-powered vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) drone features a MMC-developed hydrogen fuel battery with 27L (about 7 gallons) that afford it up to 15 hours of flight without payload or up to 10 hours with a 3 kilograms (6.6 lbs) payload.
That is a significant bump in a market where drones of such nature typically see a maximum 2-hour flight time.
Armed with 10-15 flight time, it means less interruption from multiple takeoffs and landings and therefore, a boost in efficiency in say, during a mapping or aerial land surveys.
So will we see more hydrogen-powered drone for commercial and industrial applications? I don’t know. I guess only time will tell.
Images: MMC UAV.