EADS last week operated flights powered solely by algae biofuel with Diamond DA42 aircraft at the Berlin Air Show. “Our pure biofuel flight from algae is a world first and an exciting milestone in our research at EADS,” CTO Jean Botti said. “This opens up the feasibility of carbon-neutral flights.” Only “relatively minor” modifications and adjustments were made to the four-seat, twin-engine aircraft to allow it to operate on algae biofuel, EADS said, adding that the fuel contained eight times less hydrocarbons than kerosene derived from crude oil and can reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by up to 40%. The algae oil for flight testing and demonstration flights was delivered by Biocombustibles del Chubut S.A. of Argentina and refined into biofuel by VTS Verfahrenstechnik Schwedt of Germany. EADS said it is working with partners to develop the necessary industrial infrastructure to further the production of biofuel. The project is led by EADS Innovation Works and carried out in partnership with IGV GmbH of Potsdam, Diamond Aircraft and Austro Engines of Austria.
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