The hydrogen-fueled drone represented a major breakthrough for the drone industry. Leading industrial drone manufacturer MMC brought out the HyDrone 1550, with an extended flight time and a carbon fiber exterior built for rugged terrain, to industry accolades in 2016. Now, MMC has partnered with a sales and R&D firm BSHARK. The two firms will combine their expertise in the development and manufacturing of hydrogen drones to offer the next generation line of cutting edge, clean energy hydrogen-fueled aircraft.
Narwhal 1- A hydrogen fuel cell powered drone
BSHARK’s new product line includes the Narwhal 1, an aircraft that builds on the design of the HyDrone line. The Narwhal has a 3-hour flight time, with features designed specifically for professional drone operators. The lightweight frame is constructed of easily detachable components: making it extremely portable and easy to repair on the go if required.
A plug-and-play payload connector system means that the Narwhal can be used for a variety of applications, depending upon the payload. Multiple payload configurations and options that include thermal cameras, zoom cameras, drop systems or megaphone means that Narwhal can be used for many industrial and security applications. Inspections, mapping, mining, law enforcement and search and rescue can all benefit from the Narwhal’s design.
Orca – A Hydrogen Fueling Station
Hydrogen drones are new enough to make acquiring the fuel a challenge in some areas. BSHARK has also filled that need, with the Orca hydrogen fueling station.
The portable Orca actually produces the hydrogen needed to run the drone, filling the storage containers used by Narwhal. In an hour, Orca can produce enough 99% pure hydrogen fuel to keep the Narwhal flying for 3 hours. The Orca is designed for safety, and industries using the Orca don’t need to get supplies of hydrogen from a fueling station or have it delivered by truck.
A second, even smaller iteration of Orca is in development. The introduction of this fueling station represents a giant step in the implementation of drones in remote areas. Nearly 1 billion people in the world live without electricity: the short flight times of LiPO batteries make widespread drone use impractical in those areas. With a portable hydrogen fueling station like Orca, the Narwhal can serve on industrial drone missions any time, any where.
The partnership between MMC and BSHARK has already led to development of the most sophisticated hydrogen drones in the world. With the addition of the Orca, industrial hydrogen drones are now poised to capture a major piece of the global market.