Lufthansa, one of Europe's largest airlines, has been forced to delay its scheduled commercial biofuel flights due to fuel certification issues. The Germany-based carrier had originally planned to kick off a six-month long biofuel trial beginning in April, but the fuel to be used, a 50/50 blend of vegetable oil and kerosene, has not received approval from ASTM International.

Richard Altman, executive director of the commercial aviation alternative fuels initiative, predicts that ASTM certification will come soon, stating:
ASTM is simply wrapping up the remaining technical details. The current target is to have full committee approval mid-second quarter and publish early third quarter, assuming current deliverables are received as promised.
Eventually, Lufthansa hopes to fill up its International Aero engine-equipped Airbus A321 with biofuel and become the first commercial airline with scheduled passenger flights powered by renewable fuels. The certification delay is putting a wrinkle in Lufthansa's plans, but one that seems to be ironed out soon.

[Source: Flight Global | Image: Andres Rueda – C.C. License 2.0]

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