A Boeing 747 jet, using 20 percent biofuel in one engine, is expected to take off from London’s Heathrow Airport and fly to Amsterdam in late February. The test flight will be without passengers and is part of a research project being conducted by the airline, Boeing and the maker of the engine, GE Aviation.
Interestingly, sources were specific that the biofuel used will be from a very sustainable source, but not one that would compete with food or fresh water sources. Algae is mentioned several times in the story.
Certain varieties of algae have been identified as a possible feedstock, which contains a much higher energy content than oilseeds and can be far less demanding on the environment.
The engine to be used in the test, GE’s CF6, will not require any modification for the flight, and the use of biofuel is not expected to have a negative effect on the engine’s performance or range.