In a world where technology is constantly changing, it is wonderful to see new advancements continually making our world a better place. This is why Virgin Atlantic’s latest feat is so notable: recently the airline company celebrated its Boeing 747-400 G-VROM plane, which completed its flight to Gatwick Airport as the first plane to successfully use waste-based fuel for the duration of a flight.
This feat is a sign of changing times for the aviation industry, as eco-friendly fuel allows transit to be more sustainable and better for the environment. Not only that, but using waste-based fuel allows us to not contribute to climate change as much by not being able to dispose certain kinds of trash.
Virgin Atlantic cited the corporation LanzaTech as the reason they were able to achieve this feat, as it is the direct result of the UK Government’s grant allowing LanzaTech to construct a facility to test and construct an efficient way to make waste-based aviation fuel. This can largely help decrease the amount of greenhouse emissions that currently threaten the atmosphere and also increase the quality of air in metropolitan areas near airports.
How is this possible? Well, LanzaTech focuses on recycling gases, converting them into ethanol and subsequently using that as the basis for their aviation fuel. This is done at no cost to the efficiency of the planes themselves, something proven by the success of the Boeing 747-400 G-VROM that just flew an entire trip on the eco-friendly fuel. The plane was also the first of its kind, a commercial flight that flew with ecologically friendly fuel, an innovation that extends far beyond its industry.
The next step? Virgin Atlantic has requested that the government take note of this success, hoping that they will continue to fund the projects being explored by LanzaTech regarding environmentally friendly fuel sources. Their eventual goal is to have three plants in the United Kingdom by the year 2025, making it possible for them to truly contribute to the current aviation industry with 125 million gallons of sustainable fuel per year.
Though 2025 may seem like a far-off goal, the recent accomplishments of Virgin Atlantic is an indication that the future is very bright and not as far away as we might think.