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Airbus A380 flies on 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel

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Airbus A380 flies on 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel

Tue, 29/03/2022 - 14:18
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Airbus has performed a first A380 flight powered by 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).

Can flying ever become truly carbon neutral, or are airframers claims just another case of "greenwashing"?
Can flying ever become truly carbon neutral, or are airframers claims just another case of "greenwashing"?

Don't we all want to be able to fly to our favourite dive destinations with a net-zero carbon emission? If our flights can be fuelled with Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), we might just be able to travel long distances without a bad conscience over making climate change worse.

Increasing the use of SAF remains a key pathway to achieving the industry’s ambition of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Key statistics outlined in the Waypoint 2050 report indicate that SAF could contribute between 53% and 71% of required carbon reductions.

SAF is produced from sustainable feedstocks and is very similar in its chemistry to traditional fossil jet fuel. Using SAF results in a reduction in carbon emissions compared to the traditional jet fuel it replaces over the life cycle of the fuel.  Many SAFs also contain fewer aromatic components, which enables them to burn cleaner in aircraft engines. This means lower local emissions of harmful compounds around airports during take-off and landing.

Is it truly "green"?

Depending on the feedstock and technologies used to produce it, SAF can reduce life cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions dramatically compared to conventional jet fuel. Some emerging SAF pathways even have a net-negative GHG footprint, according to the US Department of Energy.

 

Sources
Airbus press release
US Department of Energy
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