The Apache AH-64D deployed by the US in Iraq; the same type as used in the Netherlands' test flight. Photo: Wikipedia.
Aviation biofuels continue to gain momentum, with both commercial airlines and the military all conducting test flights and in general finding them more efficient than petroleum-based fuels. While we're still a number of years from commercial deployment on any significant scale--and indeed may never be able to sustain global aviation at its current scale on biofuels--another milestone has been reached. Honeywell touts that it was their fuel that has been used in the first helicopter test flight using aviation biofuel.Conducted by the Royal Netherlands Air Force in a Boeing Apache AH-64D helicopter, the flight occurred at Gilze-Rijen Airbase. The fuel used was Honeywell's Green Jet Fuel (that's a trademark, folks...), which is made from algae and used cooking oil. The biofuel was blended 50:50 with traditional jet fuel and used in one of the Apache's engines without modification.
The same fuel has been used by KLM Airlines in its commercial test flights, as well as by the the US Air Force and Navy.
More on Aviation Biofuels:
KLM Schedules First Biofuel Test Flight With Passengers
Aviation Biofuels Could Be Commercially Used Within 3 Years: Boeing
Confirmed: Biofuels Better Than Fossil Fuels in Jet Engines - Scaling Them Up is the Major Problem
40,000 Gallons of Camelina Chosen for US Navy's Aviation Biofuel Test Program
So How Much Agricultural Land Will We need to Keep Global Aviation Aloft With Biofuels?