MUMBAI: European aerospace major
and the CSIR-Indian Institute of Petroleum (CSIR-IIP) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop new technology pathways as well as test and qualify indigenous Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) in India.
“The collaboration will address the Indian aerospace industry’s decarbonisation ambitions by supporting SAF production and commercialisation, using a new HEFA technology pathway and locally sourced feedstocks,” said Airbus in a press statement.
“Both entities will work jointly on technical assessment, approvals, market access, and sustainability accreditation efforts for the production of SAF,” it said, adding that the MoU was signed with the active support and guidance from the office of the Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, Prof. Ajay Sood.
Prof Sood said: “My office is focused on facilitating local industry players to industrialise indigenous emerging technologies and other innovations that aim to make a social impact. Decarbonisation is a key goal of the aviation industry and Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) is a viable, here-and-now solution that requires scaling-up. The collaboration between CSIR-IIP and Airbus will address that potential and help shape India as a SAF factory of the world.”
Rémi Maillard, President and Managing Director, Airbus India and South Asia said that SAF is one of the main pillars of Airbus’ decarbonisation roadmap. We believe that India has the potential to become a global SAF production hub leveraging feedstock availability, local talent and technological expertise as well as India’s ability to scale up solutions. “Airbus is, therefore, committed to developing and advancing that potential. The MoU with CSIR-IIP is a major step in our ambition to decarbonise the aviation sector,” he said.
Dr. Harender Singh Bisht, Director, CSIR-IIP said that the aviation sector has strengthened its sectoral CO2 reduction targets in order to reach Net-Zero carbon emission by 2050. “SAF, including the one developed by CSIR-IIP, will act as the measure with the biggest impact on the industry’s decarbonisation effort. The biggest challenge in the rise of SAF uptake lies in (i) the ramp up of production and (ii) addressing the cost differential between SAF and conventional jet fuel. Both CSIR-IIP and Airbus are happy to jointly collaborate, communicate and promote SAF usage as a key solution to reduce aviation’s emissions,” said Dr Singh.
Airbus said that all its aircraft are certified to fly on 50% SAF blend, with a goal to achieve the capability to fly up to 100% SAF by 2030. “Airbus and CSIR-IIP will contribute to increasing this up to 100% in order to remove the need to use fossil fuels. While CSIR-IIP will study fuel properties under the new pathway and the impact on aircraft systems and the environment, Airbus will provide guidance on the new fuels evaluation process, sharing fuel testing and aircraft systems knowledge,” said Airbus.