Boeing hopes to certify Biodiesel for jet fuel, lowering fuel costs for airlines and reducing environmental impact.
Fuel costs are a huge cost for the airline industry. The environmental impact is also an issue airlines and aircraft manufacturers alike hope to tackle. One aircraft manufacturer in particular is keen to overcome the challenges and costs jet fuel presents.
Boeing is hoping for approval for the use of ‘green diesel’ in jet fuel. Different to biofuel, green diesel is made by splitting large oil molecules into smaller usable ones using hydrogen, whereas biodiesel is produced through a chemical reaction between vegetable oils and alcohol. Green diesel can be can be blended with aviation fuel and used in commercial flights.
The main advantage is that the fuel will cut carbon emissions without boosting costs as the diesel currently costs about the same as jet fuel. However, costs could be lowered as some airports would be able to produce fuels on-site.
Research continues and Boeing are working with the FAA and other industry partners to gain approval. If approved, it could help stem the industry’s contribution to global carbon emissions.
Earlier this year, Boeing, Etihad Airways, oil company Total and others announced that they will work together on a program to develop an aviation biofuel industry in the United Arab Emirates.
What do you think about biofuel, green diesel and Boeing’s research? Are we looking at the future of aviation fuel?