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Hope for Air Peace, others as popular airline flies transatlantic with cooking-oil powered engines

This week, prominent airline Virgin Atlantic recorded a significant milestone, operating the first transatlantic jetliner powered by Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) made from cooking oil...READ THE FULL STORY HERE▶

The airline operated the flight from London’s Heathrow to New York’s JFK Airport with a Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

The British government praises airline

Billionaire founder of Virgin Atlantic, Richard Branson, Transport Secretary Mark Harper, and Virgin Chief Executive Shai Weiss were among the passengers on the flight. The flight flew them for free.

He said the airline had been challenging the status quo and pushing the aviation industry since 1984.

The Transport Secretary said that the 100% SAF-powered flight reflects how the world could decarbonize transport now and in the future, reducing lifecycle emissions by 70% and inspiring the next generation.

Before the flight, the British Civil Aviation Authority analyzed various aspects of the airline’s planned flight before granting the operating permit, including undertaking ground testing with an engine running 100% on SAF.

The authority’s Chief Executive, Rob Bishton, said it is vital to accept more sustainable practices and push the frontiers of what’s possible to create a greener aviation industry.

SAF is produced from agricultural waste

SAF is perceived as critical to reducing the aviation industry’s carbon emissions but is more expensive to produce than jet fuel.

It is made from sustainable sources such as agricultural waste and cooking oil. It means its production uses about 70% less carbon.

SAF can be used in jet engines to a maximum blend of 50% with kerosene without needing modifications.

The Guardian reports that American company Gulfstream Aerospace operated the first transatlantic flight powered by 100 percent SAF earlier this month using a business jet.

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Baba Voss

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