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IAF’s AN-32 Aircraft Gets Certified to Operate on Indigenous Bio-Jet Fuel

PW Bureau

As a result of the combined effort of IAF, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the Directorate General Aeronautical Quality Assurance (DGAQA) and CSIR-Indian Institute of Petroleum, AN-32 is formally certified to Operate on Indigenous Bio-Jet Fuel

New Delhi: IAF’s formidable workhorse, the Russian made AN-32 aircraft was formally fleet certified to fly on blended aviation fuel containing up to 10% of indigenous bio-jet fuel. The approval certificate was received on Friday, at the aero-engine test facilities at Chandigarh by Air Commodore Sanjiv Ghuratia, Air Officer Commanding, 3 BRD, AF on behalf of the IAF from Mr P Jayapal, Chief Executive CEMILAC.

Tests carried out for a year

The IAF has undertaken a series of evaluation tests and trials with this green aviation fuel for the last one year. The scope of these checks was in consonance with international aviation standards. Friday’s approval is an acknowledgement of the meticulous testing using the indigenous bio-jet fuel by the IAF.

Bio-jet fuel prepared by CSIR-IIP lab, Dehradun

The indigenous bio-jet fuel was first produced by the CSIR-IIP lab at Dehradun in 2013, but could not be tested or certified for commercial use on aircraft due to lack of test facilities in the civil aviation sector. On July 27, 2018, Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa PVSM AVSM YSM VM ADC had formally announced IAF’s intention to permit the use of all its resources for testing and certifying the indigenous fuel. Since then, IAF’s flight test crew and engineers have been evaluating the performance of this fuel against international standards.

Big boost for make in India

This is a huge step in promoting the ‘Make in India’ mission as this bio-fuel would be produced from Tree Borne Oils (TBOs) sourced from tribal areas and farmers, augmenting their income substantially.