Biofuel-powered planes focus of Paris Air Show
Honeywell plans to make a big splash at the International Paris Air Show at Le Bourget by embarking on the world’s first transatlantic flight powered exclusively by biofuels. But Honeywell isn't the only company eyeing biofuels as a way to increase efficiency and reduce its carbon footprint.
Departing from the N.J.-based Morristown Municipal Airport on June 17, the Honeywell-operated Gulfstream G-450 will land at Paris-Le Bourget Airport seven hours later. The flight will be powered by an equal blend of petroleum-based jet fuel and camelina-derived biofuel, Honeywell said.
Boeing has also joined the fight for sustainable solutions. Flying its new 747-8 freighter from Washington state to the Paris Air Show, the carrier will power the plane with a mixture of traditional kerosene fuel and 15-percent camelina-based biofuel. Boeing stated that this flight will mark the first time a commercial airplane flies across the Atlantic using biologically derived fuel.
“This historic flight is a boost to aviation’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions and improve efficiency in all phases of our industry,” 747-8 Vice President and General Manager Elizabeth Lund said in a statement. “And the 747-8 freighter fits in well with these efforts by bringing huge improvements in fuel efficiency, lower carbon emissions and less noise.”
Utilizing alternative jet fuels was also a key topic at the recent the International Air Transport Association (IATA) 67th Annual General Meeting in Singapore. Outgoing Director General and CEO Giovanni Bisignani expressed his discontent with traditional sources of jet fuel, stating that oil companies forgo environmental responsibility in favor of profit.
“‘Big oil’… prefers to pocket the $1 trillion in profits that the big five made over the last decade, [rather] than to invest in green initiatives,” Bisignani told members of IATA. To reduce the worldwide dependency on jet fuel, he implored manufacturers to develop reasonably priced biofuels.