6 DECEMBER 2010
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Lufthansa is to become the first airline to use biofuel in commercial aviation. Whilst others, including Air New Zealand, Continental Airlines, TAM and Virgin Atlantic have run test flights this will be the initial time that the fuel will have been used on a commercial service.
Lufthansa is to begin a six-month trial with an Airbus A321 on flights between Hamburg and Frankfurt. Pending certification, one of the aircraft’s engines will use a 50-50 mix of biofuel and traditional kerosene.
The primary purpose of the project is to conduct a long-term trial to study the effect of biofuel on engine maintenance and engine life. During the six-month trial Lufthansa will save around 1,500 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
The project will cost Lufthansa an estimated €6.6m. Over the years the airline has invested heavily in research. Thanks to new technologies, it has improved its fuel efficiency by 30% since 1991. Average fuel consumption per passenger is now down to 4.3 litres of kerosene over 100 kilometres. www.lufthansa.com
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