SpiceJet to fly Boeing on biofuel after running a Dehradun to Delhi flight

Soon after running a Dehradun to Delhi flight on hybrid fuel, low cost air carrier SpiceJet has said its Boeing aircraft will fly on the same fuel mix soon. The move essentially means the hybrid fuel, which consists of 25 per cent bio-fuel and 75 per cent aviation turbine fuel (ATF), will be used for long distance domestic travel. SpiceJet has a fleet of 36 Boeing 737NG and 22 Bombardier Q400 planes. On an average, it operates 412 flights daily.

“The experiment was successful and we will soon extend it to our Boeing aircraft. We also want to increase the percentage of bio-fuel in the fuel mix to 50 per cent from the current 25 per cent,” Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh told Business Standard on the sidelines of MOVE summit.

However, he did not divulge the timeline for the same, though he said it was work-in-progress.

The flight from Dehradun to the national capital was operated with a Bombardier Q400 aircraft, partially powered by biojet fuel made from the Jatropha plant. India is among the few countries using biofuel for flying planes. The fuel was prepared by the CSIR-Indian Institute of Petroleum (IIP), Dehradun. The institute's director, Anjan Ray, said around 330 kg of biojet fuel was made for the flight, a little over 40 minutes.

Recently, Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said the government would bring a new Bio-ATF policy soon.