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Title: Alternative Aviation Fuels: Overview of Challenges, Opportunities, and Next Steps

Abstract

The Alternative Aviation Fuels: Overview of Challenges, Opportunities, and Next Steps report, published by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) provides an overview of the current state of alternative aviation fuels, based upon findings from recent peer-reviewed studies, scientific working groups, and BETO stakeholder input provided during the Alternative Aviation Fuel Workshop.

Authors:
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Washington, DC (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Bioenergy Technologies Office (EE-3B) (Bioenergy Technologies Office Corporate)
OSTI Identifier:
1358063
Report Number(s):
DOE/EE-1515
7652
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS; aviation; fuels; jet; diesel; feedstock; sustainability; bioenergy

Citation Formats

None, None. Alternative Aviation Fuels: Overview of Challenges, Opportunities, and Next Steps. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1358063.
None, None. Alternative Aviation Fuels: Overview of Challenges, Opportunities, and Next Steps. United States. doi:10.2172/1358063.
None, None. Tue . "Alternative Aviation Fuels: Overview of Challenges, Opportunities, and Next Steps". United States. doi:10.2172/1358063. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1358063.
@article{osti_1358063,
title = {Alternative Aviation Fuels: Overview of Challenges, Opportunities, and Next Steps},
author = {None, None},
abstractNote = {The Alternative Aviation Fuels: Overview of Challenges, Opportunities, and Next Steps report, published by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) provides an overview of the current state of alternative aviation fuels, based upon findings from recent peer-reviewed studies, scientific working groups, and BETO stakeholder input provided during the Alternative Aviation Fuel Workshop.},
doi = {10.2172/1358063},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Tue Mar 28 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Tue Mar 28 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

Technical Report:

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  • The price and availability of fuel continues to be a major barrier to the free expansion of general aviation. Although this increase in fuel prices had a more severe impact on airlines, it has also slowed the demand for general aviation aircraft. With the sales of general aviation aircraft in a depressed state, the development of alternative fuels such as liquid methane, ethanol, methanol, and automobile gasoline can help spur the industry back to health. Recent flight tests of these alternative fuels are examined.
  • The Renewable Aviation Fuels Development Center (RAFDC) at Baylor University was granted U. S. Department of Energy (US DOE) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) funds for research and development to improve the efficiency in ethanol powered aircraft, measure performance and compare emissions of ethanol, Ethyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (ETBE) and 100 LL aviation gasoline. The premise of the initial proposal was to use a test stand owned by Engine Components Inc. (ECI) based in San Antonio, Texas. After the grant was awarded, ECI decided to close down its test stand facility. Since there were no other test stands available atmore » that time, RAFDC was forced to find additional support to build its own test stand. Baylor University provided initial funds for the test stand building. Other obstacles had to be overcome in order to initiate the program. The price of the emission testing equipment had increased substantially beyond the initial quote. Rosemount Analytical Inc. gave RAFDC an estimate of $120,000.00 for a basic emission testing package. RAFDC had to find additional funding to purchase this equipment. The electronic ignition unit also presented a series of time consuming problems. Since at that time there were no off-the-shelf units of this type available, one had to be specially ordered and developed. FAA funds were used to purchase a Super Flow dynamometer. Due to the many unforeseen obstacles, much more time and effort than originally anticipated had to be dedicated to the project, with much of the work done on a volunteer basis. Many people contributed their time to the program. One person, mainly responsible for the initial design of the test stand, was a retired engineer from Allison with extensive aircraft engine test stand experience. Also, many Baylor students volunteered to assemble the. test stand and continue to be involved in the current test program. Although the program presented many challenges, which resulted in delays, the RAFDC's test stand is an asset which provides an ongoing research capability dedicated to the testing of alternative fuels for aircraft engines. The test stand is now entirely functional with the exception of the electronic ignition unit which still needs adjustments.« less
  • The Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation (GREET) model, developed at Argonne National Laboratory, has been expanded to include well-to-wake (WTWa) analysis of aviation fuels and aircraft. This report documents the key WTWa stages and assumptions for fuels that represent alternatives to petroleum jet fuel. The aviation module in GREET consists of three spreadsheets that present detailed characterizations of well-to-pump and pump-to-wake parameters and WTWa results. By using the expanded GREET version (GREET1{_}2011), we estimate WTWa results for energy use (total, fossil, and petroleum energy) and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide) formore » (1) each unit of energy (lower heating value) consumed by the aircraft or (2) each unit of distance traveled/ payload carried by the aircraft. The fuel pathways considered in this analysis include petroleum-based jet fuel from conventional and unconventional sources (i.e., oil sands); Fisher-Tropsch (FT) jet fuel from natural gas, coal, and biomass; bio-jet fuel from fast pyrolysis of cellulosic biomass; and bio-jet fuel from vegetable and algal oils, which falls under the American Society for Testing and Materials category of hydroprocessed esters and fatty acids. For aircraft operation, we considered six passenger aircraft classes and four freight aircraft classes in this analysis. Our analysis revealed that, depending on the feedstock source, the fuel conversion technology, and the allocation or displacement credit methodology applied to co-products, alternative bio-jet fuel pathways have the potential to reduce life-cycle GHG emissions by 55-85 percent compared with conventional (petroleum-based) jet fuel. Although producing FT jet fuel from fossil feedstock sources - such as natural gas and coal - could greatly reduce dependence on crude oil, production from such sources (especially coal) produces greater WTWa GHG emissions compared with petroleum jet fuel production unless carbon management practices, such as carbon capture and storage, are used.« less
  • The Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation (GREET) model, developed at Argonne National Laboratory, has been expanded to include well-to-wake (WTWa) analysis of aviation fuels and aircraft. This report documents the key WTWa stages and assumptions for fuels that represent alternatives to petroleum jet fuel. The aviation module in GREET consists of three spreadsheets that present detailed characterizations of well-to-pump and pump-to-wake parameters and WTWa results. By using the expanded GREET version (GREET1_2011), we estimate WTWa results for energy use (total, fossil, and petroleum energy) and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide) formore » (1) each unit of energy (lower heating value) consumed by the aircraft or(2) each unit of distance traveled/ payload carried by the aircraft. The fuel pathways considered in this analysis include petroleum-based jet fuel from conventional and unconventional sources (i.e., oil sands); Fisher-Tropsch (FT) jet fuel from natural gas, coal, and biomass; bio-jet fuel from fast pyrolysis of cellulosic biomass; and bio-jet fuel from vegetable and algal oils, which falls under the American Society for Testing and Materials category of hydroprocessed esters and fatty acids. For aircraft operation, we considered six passenger aircraft classes and four freight aircraft classes in this analysis. Our analysis revealed that, depending on the feedstock source, the fuel conversion technology, and the allocation or displacement credit methodology applied to co-products, alternative bio-jet fuel pathways have the potential to reduce life-cycle GHG emissions by 55–85 percent compared with conventional (petroleum-based) jet fuel. Although producing FT jet fuel from fossil feedstock sources — such as natural gas and coal — could greatly reduce dependence on crude oil, production from such sources (especially coal) produces greater WTWa GHG emissions compared with petroleum jet fuel production unless carbon management practices, such as carbon capture and storage, are used.« less
  • This volume is designed to present a strategy for the development of opportunities for minority businesses in alternative fuels. Its purpose is accomplished by first establishing legal parameters within which programming might take place. An overall strategy concept is then developed which essentially involves the coordination of DOE and other federal agencies with related energy programs in a management effort to achieve the purposes of expanded MBE business activity in energy-related fields. This overall plan is then detailed by several subcomponents including: a management and organization plan; role prescriptions for the major actors including MBEs financial awardees; the role ofmore » the regional conference; and schematic plans which highlight the various steps involved in the Master Strategy to be used by MBEs in various ''capability states''.« less