As the aviation industry continues to face mounting pressure over their emission excesses, history was made last week when the worlds first 100% biodiesel jet took off from the Reno airport. The test flight was conducted in a retired Czechoslovakian L-29 military aircraft, originally designed to be able to run on a variety of fuels, making it the ideal aircraft to experiment with biodiesel.

According to the press release:

The experimental test flights were conducted starting with a blend of jet fuel and biodiesel. The engine data was measured and the performance was evaluated and found acceptable for continued use, eventually resulting in the landmark flight using 100% renewable biodiesel fuel. According to Chief Pilot Carol Sugars who wrote and conducted the test program, “As we gradually increased the amount of biodiesel in the fuel blend, the data confirmed that the aircraft continued to perform well, giving me the confidence to transition to 100% biodiesel.” Flight tests were conducted up to an altitude of 17,000 feet showing no significant difference in performance compared to conventional jet fuel.

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