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U.S. Air Force prepares to test synthetic fuel on B-52

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September 12, 2006

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September 13, 2006 The move to become less dependent on foreign oil is certainly beginning to accelerate and the news that the U.S. Air Force is getting set to trial a B-52 powered by a mix of synthetic and JP-8 fuel shows everyone is getting the message. The historic first flight is slated for early next week (Sept 19)from Edwards Air Force Base in California, bringing the Air Force one step closer to reducing its dependence on foreign fuel. "This is an extremely important moment for the Department of Defense," said Michael A. Aimone, the Air Force's assistant deputy chief of staff for logistics, installations and mission support. "Our goal is to by 2016 have 50 percent of our aviation fuel coming from alternative fuel sources," he said. According to Aimone, energy is both an economic and national security issue, which is why the Air Force has developed a comprehensive energy strategy.

As the DoD's largest consumer of aviation fuel, the Air Force has taken the lead in the research of alternative fuel sources such as coal and biomass. The Air Force consumes 58% of all aviation fuels consumed by the services.

"The Air Force is conducting a flight test using a B-52 powered by synthetic JP-8 to demonstrate our commitment to the President's vision of becoming less dependent on foreign oil," said Mr. Aimone.

"We're working to certify the fuel for military aviation use," he said, adding, " we must do that in a visible and transparent way so that our partners in the commercial aviation industry will be able to see our testing. By working together we can expand the market for synthetic jet fuel and make it more economical to produce by increasing volume."

To further demonstrate the Air Force's commitment to energy independence, the Secretary of the Air Force has stated an interest in acquiring 100 million gallons of synthetic fuel by 2008.

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About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
2 Comments

Synthetic fuel aside, the default picture showing that B52 pouring the \"coal\" to it does not look that environmentally pleasing. I\'m pretty sure that our military is not as constricted when it comes to clean air rules as commercial jets are but good grief! And this statement from a person about as conservative as they get. I usually look at the \"tree huggers\" and \"mother earth\"-types with distain, but I like a clean environment as much as the next person!

Will, the tink

To grow a plant for biofuel means to destroy many forests and habitats and efficiency ozone for an army of planes or cars. Does US army they know what disaster they propose to "save" the Planet? They stops destroyng the air, but they start to destroy the source of the air... Why they don't waste the money on hydrogen or water fuel engines, because water will be more available if they destroy the forest and after that the Antarctica?!

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