India's First Biofuel Powered Flight Successfully Tested, Flies From Dehradun To Delhi
SpiceJet has successfully operated India’s first Biojet fuel powered test flight on Monday, August 27. This is a big achievement in the aviation sector as India now joins the league of the few countries who have biofuel operated aircraft with the USA and Australia are already using this technique.
The SpiceJet aircraft took off from Dehradun and landed at Delhi. The test flight was flagged off by Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat from Jolly Grant Airport and received by Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari, Suresh Prabhu, Dharmendra Pradhan, Dr Harsh Vardhan and Jayant Sinha at Delhi Airport. As reported by NDTV the flight duration was of 25 minutes, and there were around 25 people in the test flight which included officials from aviation regulator DGCA and SpiceJet. The Times of India has reported that the flight duration was nearly 45 minutes.
The fuel was prepared by CSIR
Reportedly, the aircraft used for testing Biojet fuel was a Bombardier Q400 aircraft, with 78 seats, whose right engine was filled with 75 per cent of Aviation Turbine Fuel(ATF) and 25 per cent of Biojet fuel. The fuel was developed by CSIR- Indian Institute of Petroleum, Dehradun. As per the institute’s Director, 330 Kg of Biojet fuel was made for the 40-minute flight.
Government to plan on a policy for use of biofuel in Aviation Industry
The Biofuel is made up of oil extracted from seeds Jatropha plant, agricultural residues, non-edible oils and biodegradable material from Industrial and Municipal wastes as told by SpiceJet. Around 500 farmer families, participated in the production of this partially refined Biofuel from Chattisgarh. The government is planning for an environment-friendly aviation action plan till 2035, “We want to increase the use of biofuel in the country so that there is the reduction in greenhouse gas emission and import of petroleum. We will make sure that more and more airlines start the use of Biofuel,” Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu said. On the same Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has tweeted, “Taking our biofuel mission forward @PetroleumMin will be bringing a new Bio- ATF Policy soon”.
— Dharmendra Pradhan (@dpradhanbjp) August 27, 2018
It will be a remarkable effort by the SpiceJet to provide a solution for traditional aviation fuel which tends to be very costly and provide the services at minimum affordable fares. SpiceJet Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh said, “It has the potential to reduce our dependence on traditional aviation fuel by up to 50 per cent on every flight and bring down fares.” He also said that India is first one among the developing countries to use Biojet fuel to fly flight. Aviation industry contributes to 2 per cent of the total global greenhouse gas emission according to the global airlines body. Biofuel has a low cost and will also help to curb carbon emissions in the environment, “It has the potential to reduce our dependence on traditional aviation fuel by up to 50 per cent on every flight and bring down prices.”
This is a big step towards making the shift from harmful traditional fuels to more natural fuels, as it will help to put a check on carbon emission. it will also help in reducing the cost of airline operations which in turn will provide the people airlines services at low cost.