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Overview of alternative fuels for aviation.
Fall 2010 Bioenergy Business Outlook
Biofuels Digest reports that 83 percent of bioenergy executives are more optimistic about their organization’s prospects for growth today than 12 months ago, and that 69 percent are more optimistic about the industry’s prospects for growth today than 12 months ago.
Algae-based aviation biofuels
This overview report on algae as a feedstock for aviation biofuels references both the research underway at Cranfield University and the BA/Solina Group project in London.
U.S. Navy, commercial aviation, Sapphire Energy, Solazyme
Overview article on algae fuel research, mentions possibility of biojet fuel production. Video of research lab included in article from MSNBC.
Boston Consulting Group
Alternative fuels generally
Technologies in some alternative energy sectors are approaching inflection points in their development and are on a path to becoming viable on a standalone basis, either completely decoupled from subsidy programs or requiring much less assistance.
World Wildlife Fund
The aviation industry should focus research and development programmes on liquid hydrogen rather than third-generation biofuels in the quest to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, according to World Wildlife Fund. Liquid hydrogen and algae-derived biofuels should be the focus of investment over other alternative fuels because they are less likely to interfere with land used for food production.
The work that is being done by ASA on developing a sustainable aviation biofuel industry in Mexico is significant and may provide a model for similar industries in developing nations around the world. The link includes a video on biofuel developments in Mexico that has been described as inspiring to the extent it is showing how the aviation industry is looking at real climate solutions.
Spooked by the spike in oil prices in 2008 and warily eyeing the latest spurt in fuel charges, airlines have noted that the costs of not going green are growing. In particular, they fret about the painful levies on carbon-spouting planes to be imposed under the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).
"Boeing Co. hopes aviation biofuels will be practical for the market by around 2015, but it's going to take a lot of work. The company is working with others throughout the industry toward having 1 percent of all aviation fuel come from non-petroleum sources by then.
The RAND organization recently published a report assaying and critiquing the military efforts to develop advanced biofuels – in particular focusing on Fisher-Tropsch renewable fuels, fuels from algae and fuels from oilseed crops.
Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO)
Life Cycle Analysis
The challenges of counting feedstock for biofuels production in Australia and demonstrating its sustainability credentials is high on the agenda for the Australian bioenergy industry.
The airline industry will not be able to meet targets being set for the use of aviation biofuels without immediate multibillion-dollar investments into feedstock production and refining capacity, according to the head of a company aiming to be an integrated producer and supplier of the new fuels.
Many aviation and renewable-energy experts have expressed optimism that biofuels made from algae and certain plants will one day lessen airlines’ dependency on petroleum, while lowering painfully high operating costs and increasing sustainability. The environmentally friendly oils have been studied intensely over the last few years and have met many stringent jet fuel regulations.
National Research Council Canada
Oceans are teeming with algae. So is every lake, river, stream and pond. Now researchers believe this lowly, plentiful organism can become a major source of fuel and may be a key to creating a greener planet. National Research Council Canada scientists in Ketch Harbour are searching for ways to grow algae, also known as phytoplankton, on an industrial scale to produce fuel for airplanes.
Argone National Laboratory
The economic and environmental analysis of algae biofuel production is in its early stages. Many questions regarding energy return, emissions, and environmental sustainability are unanswered. It is difficult to compare the scenarios reported so far because of differences in the analysis methodologies and in the process data.
Global Bioenergy Partnership
In November 2011 the GBEP Steering Committee endorsed the report “The Global Bioenergy Partnership Sustainability Indicators for Bioenergy.” It was developed by GBEP Partners and Observers through the GBEP Task Force on Sustainability that had been working since 2008, initially under the leadership of the United Kingdom and then (since October 2010) of Sweden.
Jatropha life cycle assessment
JOil Ltd, a scientific bioenergy crop developer of New Generation Jatropha, discussed cutting edge science and biotechnology processes that could increase the present productivity of Jatropha from the less than 1 ton of oil/hectare to 3 tons/hectare using breeding, tissue culture and genetic engineering processes.
Life Cycle Assessment
Life-cycle analysis conducted by the U.S. EPA has determined biodiesel and renewable diesel produced using palm oil feedstock does not meet the minimum 20 percent greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction required by the federal renewable fuel standard (RFS2). According to information published by the agency, palm oil biodiesel was found to have a GHG reduction rating of 17%, while palm oil renewable diesel had only an 11% GHG reduction.
Kansas State University
Life Cycle Assessment
In this study, life cycle analysis (LCA) of shea butter biodiesel from Well-to-Pump (WTP) is considered utilizing information gathered from Anuanom Industrial Bio Products Ltd. (AIBP) in Ghana, West Africa.
The European Commission has asked airlines to report on the amount of biomass they use so that biofuels can be accounted as zero emission in the greenhouse gas emissions reports they are requested to produce each year under the EU's carbon scheme for the aviation section.
Argone National Laboratory
Researchers around the world are developing sustainable plant-based liquid transportation fuels (biofuels) to reduce petroleum consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. Algae are attractive because they promise large yields per acre compared to grasses, grains and trees, and because they produce oils that might be converted to diesel and gasoline equivalents.
Albemarle Corporation, Cobalt Technologies, Naval Air Warfare Center
The Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division (NAWCWD), China Lake has awarded a contract to Albemarle Corporation to complete the first biojet fuel production run based on bio n-butanol provided by Cobalt Technologies.
World Economic Forum, AT Kearney
Scaling-up existing sustainable transportation technologies can play a significant role in creating jobs and driving long-term, sustained economic growth. However, implementing these technologies is often delayed due to conflicting interests among diverse stakeholders.
The aviation industry is investigating the potential of substituting the currently used aviation fuel with alternative fuels—mainly those derived from biofuels. Of all the available sources of biofuels, numerous studies indicate that those derived from algae seem to be the most promising, in terms of providing a viable and sustainable alternative to fossil fuels.
Argonne National Laboratory
The Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation (GREET) model, developed at Argonne National Laboratory, has been expanded to include well-to-wake (WTWa) analysis of aviation fuels and aircraft. This report documents the key WTWa stages and assumptions for fuels that represent alternatives to petroleum jet fuel.
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