In the past few days there has been a lot going on in the field of aviation. For sure you have heard that two American airlines, Alaska Airlines and United Airlines, have started limited flights using only bio fuels. Although in theU. S.it has been a big thing to be using such fuels, there are some European airlines, Lufthansa and KLM Royal Dutch Airline, which started using them earlier.
In July it has been granted for the airlines to use the fuel that has been created of animal fat and plant oils. These renewable fuels have been mixed with equal amounts of traditional fuel.
Where does the fuel come from?
You can be sure that you won’t be feeling the smell of French fries every time a jet flies by. There are different kinds of fuels that the companies can choose from, including cooking oil, algae derived fuels and plant based oils.
In all of the cases these fuels are mixed with traditional jet fuel. Usually the companies go for the plant oil derivatives.
There are two main plants used for creating the fuel: camelina sativa, also known as Gold of Pleasure and jatropha curcas. The good thing about the plants is that they can grow almost anywhere and they need very little water.
Nonetheless United Airlines is using another kind of fuel, the one based on algae that is produced by Solazyme. The truth is that the fuel isn’t entirely renewable because it is made of 40% algae based oil and 60% traditional jet fuel.
Emissions of carbon
The goal that people are trying to reach is to reduce the carbon emissions by 2020, and it is said that the emissions can be reduced by up to 1% in case the airplanes have the right engines. Nonetheless, professionals are hoping that in case the planes start using 100% renewable fuel, this will be reduced by 2%. Even at this moment it is possible to reduce the emissions by one ton every flight.
Alaska Air has stated that the steps that they have been taking aren’t entirely green, because they are using cooking oil based fuel, that isn’t produced locally. The raw material comes fromTexasand it is processed inNew Orleans.
Although the process isn’t perfect yet, we can be sure that the airline companies are on the right track, and there will be some improvement.