Several key Russian aviation companies, including Aeroflot, S7 Group, Volga-Dnepr, National Research Center Zhukovsky Institute, State Research Institute of Civil Aviation, as well as fuel producer Gazprom Neft and Airbus, have launched a sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) alliance with a view to develop a favourable ecosystem to ramp up SAF production in the country and stimulate its further usage in accordance with international standards.
The alliance is an inclusive and open platform for mutual activities of industry participants along the entire green fuel chain, from fuel producers, airlines, airports, aircraft manufacturers, up to engine manufacturers, research organizations, that are interested in fruitful cooperation.
The Eurasian SAF Alliance members will prepare the roadmap to coordinate future joint efforts and plan to perform the first flight using locally produced biofuel no later than 2024.
Experimental batches of the SAF will be produced at Gazprom Neft refineries in Moscow and Omsk and the key research will be carried out by the company’s Industrial Innovation Technology Center in St. Petersburg with the aim of developing SAF as well as its mass production technology.
“Decarbonisation and new international environmental regulations require innovative technological solutions for the production of fuels with a low carbon footprint. Thanks to scientific expertise, large-scale modernisation and refinery development, Gazprom Neft is actively developing the segment of environmentally friendly products for all types of transport. Now, together with airlines, aircraft manufacturers and scientific institutes, we are ready to start new research and develop green aviation fuel, unique for the Russian industry. The creation of the SAF-alliance will bring together the expertise of all the participants of the air transportation market to make the process of Russian aviation biofuel development more efficient,” Gazprom Neft Anatoly Cherner, Deputy Chairman of the Management Board said.
“Achieving zero CO2 emissions and contributing to climate change mitigation requires the efforts of all industry players. Today, together with other aviation industry leaders, we have taken the first step towards greener aviation in Russia. As part of this alliance, we will combine our expertise to accelerate the sustainable aviation fuel certification process and promote its development in Russia. All Airbus passenger aircraft are already certified to fly with 50% sustainable fuel blends and we are researching certification for 100% use. We will be glad to share our knowledge with the Alliance partners,” Julien Franyatt, Head of Airbus in Russia.
Gazpromneft-Aero is the aviation fuel operator of Gazprom Neft and the leading Russian jet fuel market by volume of retail sales with a 26% market share. The company serves more than 260 airlines and provides refueling services in 320 airports worldwide. Some 2,500 people currently work for the company which is headquartered at St Petersburg. Gazpromneft-Aero is a strategic partner of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and a member of the Joint Inspection Group (JIG).
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