Plant-powered planes show promise

11BBC – To the eye, there was nothing remarkable about the aging Falcon 20 jet as it took off from Ottawa International airport in Canada at the end of October in 2012. But the twin-engined, 10-seater plane was in the process of making aviation history.

After a short flight that saw it climb to 30,000 ft (9,000m) over the capital city, the plane touched back down at the airport to secure its world first.

“Today, I flew the world’s first 100% biofuel flight,” said pilot Tim Leslie on landing the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) craft. “It is truly inspiring to take this step towards an eco-friendly future.”

Unlike conventional aircraft which burn kerosene – a polluting fossil fuel – Leslie’s plane was powered by fuel derived from rapeseed oil. However, it could equally have been powered by one of a number of biofuels made from algae, flax, coconut husks or even from used cooking-oil.

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Source and Photo: BBC, 15th January, 2013
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