Történelmet írt a Continental Airlines: november 7-én szált fel, ugyanis az Egyesült Államok első bioüzemanyaggal teljesített járata. A 1403-as, Houston és Chicago között közlekedő járatot a légitársaság keskenytörzsű, wingletes Boeing 737-800 típusú repülőgépe teljesítette. Az United-Continental elszánt környezettudatosságát jelzi, hogy nagymennyiségű bioüzemanyag vásárlásáról írt alá szándéknyilatkozatot, hogy a jövőben is minél több járatot üzemeltethessen környezetkímélő hajtóanyagokkal.
Az United-Continental hivatalos közleménye további részletekkel:
United Continental Holdings announced that its subsidiary Continental Airlines today is operating the first U.S. commercial flight powered by advanced biofuels. Flight 1403, a Boeing 737-800, departs Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport at 10:30 a.m. for Chicago O’Hare International Airport, making United the first U.S. airline to fly passengers using a blend of sustainable, advanced biofuel and traditional petroleum-derived jet fuel.
“United is taking a significant step forward to advance the use of environmentally responsible and cost-efficient alternative fuels,” said Pete McDonald, United’s executive vice president and chief operations officer. “Sustainable biofuels, produced on a large scale at an economically viable price, can one day play a meaningful role in powering everyone’s trip on an airline.”
Today’s flight demonstrates United’s commitment to sustainable biofuels and making progress toward enhancing energy security, diversity of our fuel supply and a reduction in lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions compared to traditional fossil fuels.
“Today, roughly four months since the approval of hydroprocessed renewable fuels in commercial aviation, we are excited to see the deployment of these fuels on a domestic U.S. flight,” said Air Transport Association of America (ATA) Vice President and Chief Economist John Heimlich. “ATA member airlines continue to demonstrate leadership in fostering new and environmentally preferred sources of energy to transport people and goods throughout the globe.”
Powered by the World’s First 100 Percent Algae-Derived Jet Fuel
Solazyme, working with Honeywell’s UOP process technology, developed the algae oil that was refined into jet fuel to power today’s commercial flight. Solazyme produced the world’s first 100 percent algae-derived jet fuel for both commercial and military applications.
Also today, United is announcing it has signed a letter of intent with Solazyme to negotiate the purchase of 20 million gallons of jet fuel per year, derived exclusively from algae oil, for delivery as early as 2014. Solazyme, headquartered in south San Francisco, manufactured the algae oil used on today’s flight through its proprietary fermentation process. The end product was then refined outside Houston using renewable jet fuel processing technology from Honeywell’s UOP.
“Looking at United, a company that understands the sustainability of tomorrow means environmental responsibility today, we see a true pioneer in the future of flight,” said Jonathan Wolfson, Solazyme’s CEO. “Solazyme is deeply committed to commercializing our renewable oil production technology, and we’re excited to be partnering with United on the first U.S. commercial biofuel flight.”
Forrás: United Continental Holdings Inc. (2011. november 7.)