By Michael Pliskin
A US Air Force Boeing B-52H Stratofortress burning synthetic jet fuel in two of its eight engines flew from Edward’s AFB in California’s Mojave Desert on 19 September.
Engines number 7 and 8, on the outer right wing – consuming a 50-50 blend of standard JP-8 jet fuel and a synthetic Fischer-Tropsch fuel – produced visibly less smoke on take-off than the other six engines. A wingtip landing gear malfunction caused an early end to the flight, so the full battery of tests – expected to last up to 4h – was not completed. However two or three more flights are planned, lasting up to 12h. The tests form part of the US Department of Defense’s Assured Fuels Initiative, aimed at reducing US reliance on foreign oil.
Source: Flight International