Chinese airline completes cooking oil fuel flight

Hainan Airlines has completed the country's first commercial flight using biofuel, made from waste cooking oil
Hainan Airlines has completed the country's first commercial flight using biofuel, made from waste cooking oil

A Chinese airline on Saturday completed the country's first commercial flight using biofuel, made from waste cooking oil, as the government seeks to promote greater environmental sustainability.

A Hainan Airlines flight from commercial hub Shanghai to Beijing used biofuel supplied by China National Aviation Fuel company and energy giant Sinopec, according to a statement from US aircraft giant Boeing.

The Boeing 737 plane used a 50-50 mix of conventional jet fuel and biofuel made from "waste collected from restaurants in China," it said. A Boeing spokeswoman confirmed to AFP that the flight was completed Saturday.

Used cooking oil, called "gutter oil" in Chinese, has been the target of media exposes about how the waste product is sometimes illegally reused for human consumption.

Sinopec, which was criticised in the Chinese environmental documentary "Under the Dome", said waste oil could be put to better use.

"This fully represents an earnest commitment from Sinopec to continuously advance scientific and technological innovation, and promote green and low-emission development," Sinopec said in the statement.

The world's first flight powered entirely by biofuel took place in 2012 when a plane took off from the Canadian capital Ottawa, but several have used biofuels mixed with traditional petroleum-based jet fuel.

Australia's Qantas and Air Canada have both tested biofuel on commercial flights.

Last year, Boeing announced it would co-operate with the Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China to develop aviation . It has a similar project with a research institute under the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

China is a key market for Boeing, which estimates the country will need 6,020 planes worth $870 billion through 2033.


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© 2015 AFP

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Mar 21, 2015
Seagulls love french fries. There is going to be a significant increase of bird strikes on this plane!

Mar 21, 2015
It's been done already. Jet engines will burn almost any oil as long as it burns cleanly. The big question is whether this stuff is safe to use at lower temperatures. Many oils will gel or even solidify at the low temperatures commonly found in the stratosphere.

Mar 21, 2015
Another desperate propaganda to defend indefensible centralization and globalization. Wind, solar, cooking oil with bacon and other paranoid delusions of future distopias.

People should not travel as much as they do. People should be able to find home, education, jobs, love/marriage and ALL amenities of civilized life they need within few tens miles from their location with few exceptions. With today's technology we can see the world and connect to people without leaving our home so traveling is obsolete. But gurus of oil greased "progress" will scream of blasphemy to the fact that we do not need oil or energy as much as they want us to believe.

What people will not find close to home is exploitation of those who produce their food and clothing as well as wars they inspired by fueling global demand of useless goods and services fulfilling their greed. The globalization instead of bringing people close, built closed enclaves of opulence and disregard to common humanity.

Mar 21, 2015
The post above brought to you by PhysicsMatter Ball-and-Chain Systems.

Mar 21, 2015
Look, up in the sky, it's a bird! Mmmm... smells like fried chicken!

Mar 22, 2015
So, if a bird strikes that engine would it be fried or roasted?

Mar 22, 2015
Unfortunately, since the engines used up all the cooking oil, the tempura had to be fried in JP-4.

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