CEMILAC formally approved use of bio-jet fuel

  • On January 22, 2019, after months of exhaustive ground and flight trials, the indigenous produced bio-fuel has been finally cleared for use by the premier airworthiness certification agency of the country.
  •  On being completely satisfied with the performance parameters, the Centre for Military Airworthiness and Certification (CEMILAC)  has formally granted its approval for use of this fuel, produced from non-conventional source i.e. non-edible vegetable/ tree borne oil to be used on military aircraft.
  • The bio-jet fuel has been produced from seeds of Jatropha plant sourced from Chhattisgarh and processed at CSIR-IIP’s lab at Dehradun.
  • This approval enables the IAF to fulfil its commitment to fly the maiden IAF An-32 aircraft on January 26, 2019, with a blend of bio-jet fuel.
  • Any hardware or software which is to be used on Indian military aircraft, including those operated by Indian Navy or Army has to be cleared for use by CEMILAC before being inducted for regular use. This clearance is a major step for continued testing and eventual full certification of the bio-jet fuel for use on a commercial scale by civil aircraft as well.
  • Increased demand of bio-jet fuel would give impetus to increase in collection of tree-borne non-edible oil seeds, which, in turn, will help generate ancillary income, increase remuneration for tribal and marginal farmers, and enthuse cultivation/ collection of oilseeds.
  • To use bio-jet fuel on all military and civilian aircraft, BIS has in collaboration with IAF, research organisations and the industry brought out a new standard for Aviation Turbine Fuels. These specifications will align Indian standards with current international standards.
  • A committee constituted with domain experts was tasked to originate the required standards. After a series of deliberations over the past nine months, an Indian Standard IS 17081:2019 Aviation Turbine Fuel (Kerosene Type, Jet A-1) containing Synthesised Hydrocarbons, has been formulated.

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