Metropolregion Hamburg

Cabin technology and multifunctional fuel cells

Aircraft and Aircraft SystemsCabins and Cabin SystemsLeading-Edge Cluster Competition

New system concepts are developed in this flagship project. The focal point is on the deployment of fuel cells in commercial aircraft and the associated innovations for cabin technologies.

The outlook is positive: growth rates of approximately 5 percent per year in aviation and a demand for aircraft to match. This situation makes innovations to reduce emissions a must. Highly efficient electrical systems can contribute to reducing fuel consumption and thereby protect the environment. Fuel cells as an energy source for these systems do not only reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions, though. Operating costs also come down. Multifunctionality is a convincing argument for the use of fuel cells in commercial aircraft. Not only is electrical energy generated; water and inert gas, as by-products, are used for active fire protection.

The Leading-Edge Cluster’s flagship project, “Cabin technology and multifunctional fuel cells”, develops innovative system concepts to the point of technological maturity. Competent representatives from the regional aviation area work together with selected partners. The focus is on the deployment of fuel cells in commercial aircraft and the associated innovations for cabin technologies.

Foremost priority in this flagship project, led by Airbus, is a quantifiable improvement in environmental impact, along with securing and strengthening the scientific and technological position of the German aviation industry in the Hamburg Metropolitan Region. Expanding the national competence in innovation and integration within the global competitive arena is a further goal.
This flagship project is making a substantial contribution to the achievement of the ACARE 2020 targets. Specifically, the following targets have been defined:

  • reduction of energy consumption and emissions
  • increase in comfort and flexibility
  • increase in efficiency and effectiveness
  • expansion of the core competency in fuel cells and strengthening the core competency in the field of cabin systems for Hamburg as a centre of aviation


Airbus Corporate Communications,, +49 [0]40-743 72336


Airbus Operations GmbH

Project partners

AOA – Apparatebau Gauting GmbH
German Aerospace Center (DLR), Department of Aviation and Space Psychology
EADS Deutschland Innovation Works
Flughafen Hamburg GmbH

Sponsored by

Federal Ministry of Education and Research within the framework of the Leading-Edge Cluster strategy