Indian Bio-Jet Fuel technology receives formal military certification: Basics Explained

CSIR-IIP Dehradun’s home-grown technology to produce bio-jet fuel has been formally approved for use on military aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF).

The technology, developed by the Indian Institute of Petroleum (CSIR-IIP), a constituent laboratory of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, has undergone evaluation tests and trials over the last three years

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                The National Policy on Biofuels 2018 emphasises active promotion of advanced bio-fuels, including CBG. The Government of India had launched the GOBAR-DHAN (Galvanising Organic Bio-Agro Resources) scheme to convert cattle dung and solid waste in farms to CBG and compost. The scheme proposes to cover 700 projects across the country in 2018-19. 

                  The National Policy on Biofuels 2018 specifically promotes advanced biofuels to achieve a target of 20% blending of biofuels with fossil-based fuels by 2030. The central government announced advancing the target date for achieving 20 per cent ethanol-blending with petrol by two years. According to government notification, the increased ethanol blending will be applicable from April 2023.

Up to 100% FDI is allowed under the automatic route for renewable energy generation and distribution projects subject to provisions of The Electricity Act, 2003.

Indian bio-jet fuel can be produced from used cooking oil, tree-borne oils, short gestation oilseed crops grown off-season by farmers, and waste extract from edible oil processing units. It will reduce air pollution by virtue of its ultra low sulphur content compared with conventional jet fuel and contribute to India’s Net-Zero greenhouse gas emissions targets. It will also enhance the livelihoods of farmers and tribals engaged in producing, collecting, and extracting non-edible oils.

Unlike other renewable energy sources, biomass can be converted directly into liquid fuels, called “biofuels,” to help meet transportation fuel needs. Biofuels are renewable transportation fuels produced from biomass —fuels produced from renewable organic material—

First-generation biofuels are made from sugar crops (sugarcane, sugarbeet), starch crops (corn, sorghum), oilseed crops (soybean, canola), and animal fats. Sugar and starch crops are converted through a fermentation process to form bio alcohols, including ethanol, butanol, and propanol. Oils and animal fats can be processed into biodiesel. Ethanol is the most widely used bio alcohol fuel. Most vehicles can use gasoline-ethanol blends containing up to 10 percent ethanol (by volume).

Second-generation biofuels, or cellulosic biofuels, are made from cellulose, which is available from non-food crops and waste biomass such as corn stover, corncobs, straw, wood, and wood byproducts. Third-generation biofuels use algae as a feedstock.

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