Universal Hydrogen, founded by a Ukrainian, raises $20.5M. It develops hydrogen storage solutions

Universal Hydrogen, a startup founded by a Ukrainian, has raised a $20.5 million Series A round. The company develops hydrogen capsules and conversion kits for airplanes. It was reported by the news outlet NV, citing TechCrunch.

  • The round was led by Playground Global Venture Fund with a syndicate of investors including Fortescue Future Industries, Coatue, Global Founders Capital, Plug Power, Airbus Ventures, Toyota AI Ventures, Sojitz Corporation, and Future Shape.
  • Universal Hydrogen will use the funds to increase its team from 12 to 40 people, as well as to accelerate its technology development.
  • Universal Hydrogen’s first development will be lightweight modular capsules for transporting “green hydrogen” in planes equipped with hydrogen fuel cells.
  • To help launch the market for its capsules, Universal Hydrogen is developing one such aircraft with a modified turboprop engine itself. It will accommodate 40-60 passengers and perform regional flights of up to 700 miles. The project is the result of cooperation with the investor company Plug Power, which will supply the hydrogen and fuel cells, and magniX, whose product is engines for electric planes.

In 2020, the company was founded by the Ukrainian Pavlo (Paul) Eremenko, John-Paul Clarke, Jon Gordon, and Jason Chua. Universal Hydrogen is headquartered in Los Angeles. In the past, Paul Eremenko was the CTO at the Airbus Group, a global leader in aeronautics.

Paul Eremenko, a source

“Hydrogen is the only viable path for aviation to reach Paris Agreement targets and help limit global warming. We are going to build an end-to-end hydrogen value chain for aviation by 2025,” commented Paul Eremenko.