2008-12-15 - Continental biofuel testContinental to test biofuel
Biokraftstoff-Versuchsflug für Januar angekündigtContinental Airlines announced plans for the first biofuel-powered demonstration flight of a U.S.
Biokraftstoff-Versuchsflug für Januar angekündigt
Continental Airlines announced plans for the first biofuel-powered demonstration flight of a U.S. commercial airliner, to be conducted in Houston on Jan. 7, 2009. The demonstration flight, which will be operated with no passengers, will be powered by a special fuel blend including components derived from algae and jatropha plants -- sustainable, second-generation fuel sources that don't impact food crops or water resources, and don't contribute to deforestation.
Continental has partnered on this project with Boeing; CFM International, a 50/50 joint company of General Electric Company and Snecma (SAFRAN Group); refining technology developer UOP, a Honeywell company; and oil providers Sapphire Energy (algae) and Terrasol (jatropha). The demonstration flight will be the first biofuel flight by a commercial carrier using algae as a fuel source and the first using a two-engine aircraft, a Boeing 737-800 equipped with CFM International CFM56-7B engines.
The fuel used in one of the two CFM engines during the demonstration flight will be a blend of 50 percent traditional jet fuel, and 50 percent biofuel from algae and jatropha. Operating under a specially-issued "Experimental" aircraft type certificate, the aircraft will be crewed by Continental's own FAA-licensed test pilots. With no passengers on board, the flight test plan calls for operating the No. 2 (right) engine on the special biofuel blend, including power accelerations / decelerations, in-flight engine shut-down and restart and other flight maneuvers that include both normal and non-normal procedures. Numerous flight parameters will be recorded, and a post-flight engine analysis will contribute to findings which are expected to show that the biofuel blend is readily substitutable for regular fuel without any degradation of performance or safety, and with a net reduction in carbon emissions.