Air Force

July 6, 2012

A-10 first aircraft to use alcohol-based fuel

Tags:
Released by Air Force News Service

An A-10C Thunderbolt II takes off from Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., June 28, 2012, marking the first flight of an aircraft powered solely by a alcohol-derived jet fuel blend. ATJ, or Alcohol to Jet, is a cellulousic-based fuel. It can be derived using wood, paper, grass, anything that is a cell-based material. The sugars extracted from these materials are fermented into alcohols, which are then hydro-processed into the aviation-grade kerosenes used for aviation fuel.

(AFNS) — On June 28, the 40th Flight Test Squadron, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., made history flying the first aircraft to use a new fuel blend derived from alcohol.

“The A-10 is the first aircraft ever to fly on this fuel,” said Jeff Braun, Chief for the Air Force Alternative Fuel Certification Division, at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.

“It flew like a usual A-10 would without any issues,” said Maj. Olivia Elliott, an A-10 pilot and an evaluator for the mission.

The fuel, known as ATJ (Alcohol-to-Jet) is the third alternative fuel to be evaluated by the Air Force for fleet-wide use as a replacement for standard petroleum-derived JP-8 aviation fuel.

Before ATJ, other alternative fuels included a synthetic paraffinic kerosene derived from coal and natural gas and a bio-mass fuel derived from plant-oils and animal fats known as Hydroprocessed Renewable Jet.

ATJ is a cellulousic-based fuel. It can be derived using wood, paper, grass, anything that is a cell-based material. The sugars extracted from these materials are fermented into alcohols, which are then hydro-processed into the aviation-grade kerosenes used for aviation fuel.

The Fischer-Tropsch SPK blend has been fully certified by the Air Force for operational use throughout the Air Force. All testing of the bio-mass HRJ has been completed and formal coordination is underway to certify it as an approved fuel agent.

Like ATJ, the bio-mass fuel was first tested by 40th FLTS in 2010, using the same A-10 test platform.

“The A-10 is an excellent platform for testing the new fuel due in part to its segregated fuel system,” said Capt. Joseph Rojas, A-10 test engineer. “The system allows one engine to run off a fuel supply that is completely segregated from the other engine. This allows us to fly with one engine on the new fuel and the other on traditional fuel. If engine operation is normal, as with the ATJ blend, then we progress to flying with both engines on the new fuel.”

The A-10 ATJ fuel test went through similar ground and flight tests, using a mixture of the alternative fuel and the standard Air Force JP-8 .

Ground-based testing included monitoring engine performance and ensuring all data correlated favorably to both the technical requirements and JP-8 fuel specification. Flight tests included analyzing aircraft performance during controlled accelerations and climbs and operational maneuvering.

The Air Force has recently approved fleet-wide certification efforts of the ATJ fuel blend. Once the AFCD completes all air and ground testing, the ATJ will be approved as an official alternative fuel source for Air Force use.

“Eventually, it is possible that aircraft will see JP-8 consisting of all these alternatives,” said Braun. “You won’t be able to determine the difference and you won’t care, because all perform as JP-8.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Kevin J. Gruenwald

40 years of Red Flag at Nellis

U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Kevin J. Gruenwald A flight of F-15 Eagles and F-16 Fighting Falcons Aggressors fly in formation over the Nevada Test and Training Ranges June 5, 2008. The proposal for Red Flag came in early...
 
 

True inteGRITy

AL UDEID AIR BASE, Qatar — Your homework after reading this article is to turn to the closest Airman and ask him to define ‘integrity.’ Wait while he rattles off some version of, “integrity means doing the right thing even when no one is watching,” and then say “stop telling people that; you sound like...
 
 

Diversity is Biomedical Sciences Corps strength

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — The Biomedical Sciences Corps will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Special Order CA-5, which established the Air Force Medical Services Biomedical Sciences Corps, here Jan. 28. Many Airmen, new and seasoned, are unfamiliar with the five distinct branches of the U.S. Air Force Medical Service corps, which includes the...
 

 
U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika

Airman pulls woman from burning vehicle

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika Tech. Sgt. Justin Mahana, 823rd Maintenance Squadron support section chief, poses in front of an HH-60G Pave Hawk at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Jan. 20. On Jan. 6, Mahana pulled...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo by David Bedard

Former Airman sentenced to 18 years in drunken–driving death tells story

U.S. Air Force photo by David Bedard Former Airman 1st Class Lane Wyatt recounts the night of June 30, 2013, when he killed Citari Townes-Sweatt in a drunken-driving accident. Wyatt was sentenced Dec. 19, 2014, to 18 years in p...
 
 

Stepping into a better self

U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Mikaley Towle Michelle Strawn, 99th Force Support Squadron, works out to a step class video at the Warrior Fitness Center on Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Jan. 21. Strawn is a group fitness instructor and teaches Hatha yoga on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Warrior Fitness Center...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin