IAF achieved a milestone, when an AN-32 aircraft of the Indian Air Force, powered with a 10% blend of Indian bio-jet fuel, took-off from Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport, Leh. It is the first time that the bio-jet indigenous fuel-powered both engines of the aircraft. The aircraft was flight tested, and its performance was validated at Chandigarh Air Base before undertaking the operational flight to Leh. IAF This successful test flight demonstrates IAF’s capabilities to absorb newer technology while sponsoring indigenization. The technology to produce this fuel was developed by CSIR-IIP in 2013 but could not be tested and certified for commercial use due to a lack of concurrent aviation test facilities in the country. In 2018, the IAF sponsored this project and channelized its human and material resources for the complete range of fuel testing. Bio-jet fuel is produced from non-edible ‘Tree Borne Oils,’ grown and procured from the tribal areas of Chhattisgarh state. IAF’s efforts would assist in reducing carbon footprint and India’s dependence on crude imports.
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