Otilia Drăgan of Autoevolution – Reports
The most daring predictions for aviation envision hybrid-electric and hydrogen-powered airliners completely replacing current commercial fleets. But that would happen in the next decade, at best. The net-zero goal can’t wait until then, without implementing any intermediary solutions. It looks like both the industry and government believe that SAF (sustainable aviation fuel) could fulfill this role.
Back in 1958, the Gulfstream I was paving the way for what would become the incredible business jet industry that is now an integral part of the modern world. Throughout the decades, Gulfstream has maintained its iconic status, always stepping up the game and continuing to improve business aviation.
Already a leader when it comes to cabin design, passenger comfort, and aircraft performance, the jet maker now has a new record under its belt. It claims to have recently conducted a flight powered by 100% SAF, an industry first for business jets. This would make Gulfstream the first OEM (original equipment manufacturer) to achieve this performance in the business jet sector.
However, the company didn’t give out too many details about this important flight, most likely because it was just an initial test. The important thing to note is that a Gulfstream G650 carried out the flight, travelling from Savannah, Georgia, with unblended green jet fuel in its Rolls-Royce G650 BR725 engine.
The particular SAF that was used is made in the U.S. and consists of HEFA (Hydroprocessed Esters and Fatty Acids) and SAK (Synthesized Aromatic Kerosene). The HEFA is made by World Energy in California, from waste fat and plant oils, while the SAK is produced by Virent in Wisconsin, from plant-based sugars.
The result is a fuel that can be used unblended in jet engines, without requiring any technical modifications, to obtain CO2 emission cuts by up to 80%.
With several world speed records linked to its name, the Gulfstream G650 broke the norm again with what is surely just the beginning of a green revolution for business aviation.