Airlines for America (A4A), the industry trade organization for the leading U.S. airlines, applauded ASTM International, one of the largest standards-development organizations in the world, for approving a new jet fuel specification that will further enable the use of sustainable alternative fuels in aviation.
“The approval of this new alternative jet fuel pathway is significant for all consumers of jet fuel, bringing the airline industry another step closer to widespread production of cleaner, alternative fuels that will help meet our environmental goals while enhancing the security and competitiveness of our energy supply,” said A4A Vice President, Environmental Affairs Nancy Young.
Supported by work undertaken by the Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative® (CAAFI), which A4A helped co-found in 2006, ASTM International approved the addition of a new bio-derived jet fuel annex to the alternative jet fuel specification D7566. The new annex details the fuel properties and criteria necessary to control the manufacture and quality of this new fuel, referred to as “Synthesized Iso-Paraffinic” (SIP) fuel, which is produced from hydroprocessed fermented sugars, to ensure safe aviation use. The new annex provides that SIP fuel may be blended at up to 10 percent (by volume) with conventional jet fuel.
With the approval of the alternative jet fuel specification for SIP, hydroprocessing of fermented sugars becomes the third approved pathway for production of alternative jet fuels. The other approved alternative fuel pathways are conversion of triacylglycerides from plant oils and animal processing waste, referred to as “Hydroprocessed Esters and Fatty Acids” or “HEFA,” and conversion of a variety of biomass and fossil fuel feedstocks through the Fischer-Tropsch (FT) process.
“This standard provides another pathway for alternative jet fuel production, and will enable increased commercial production,” said Young. “We commend ASTM International, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, the airframe and engine manufacturers, the U.S. military, fuel producers and our entire CAAFI team for continuing to drive toward commercially viable alternative jet fuels that meet the rigorous criteria set forth under the jet fuel specification.”
Annually, commercial aviation helps drive nearly $1.5 trillion in U.S. economic activity and more than 11 million U.S. jobs. A4A airline members and their affiliates transport more than 90 percent of all U.S. airline passenger and cargo traffic. America needs a cohesive National Airline Policy that will support the integral role the nation’s airlines play in connecting people and goods globally, spur the nation’s economic growth and create more high-paying jobs.
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