The National Academies

ACRP 02-65 [Final]

Tracking Alternative Jet Fuel

  Project Data
Funds: $250,000
Research Agency: Metron Aviation
Principal Investigator: Bruno Miller
Effective Date: 6/19/2015
Completion Date: 7/29/2016

ACRP Report 165: Tracking Alternative Jet Fuel provides guidance to help airports and other interested stakeholders identify the potential needs for effectively and efficiently tracking alternative jet fuel into the airport. This guidance, along with a companion decision-support tool, compares different types of tracking mechanisms and evaluates the advantages and disadvantages, impediments to implementation, and their potential impacts.
The aviation industry strongly supports the introduction of alternative jet fuels that have the potential to provide environmental, economic, and security-of-supply benefits compared to conventional fuels. These fuels are expected to be drop-in fuels meaning that they can be used in existing aircraft and supporting infrastructure. Some airlines have started taking delivery of alternative jet fuel at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), and other similar commercial arrangements are expected in the near future.
As alternative jet fuels start to enter the supply chain, there may be a need to keep track of such fuels for technical (e.g., quality control, fuel efficiency); regulatory (e.g., tracking reductions in local air quality pollutants or GHGs); and commercial (e.g., contract verification, CSR marketing/sustainability reporting) reasons. A logical point to institute fuel-tracking mechanisms may be at the airport because the supply chain for conventional and alternative jet fuels converge before the fuel gets loaded into the aircraft. Airports can play a key role to incentivize the commercialization of alternative jet fuels by helping to facilitate some of the logistics associated with using these drop-in fuels, in particular fuel tracking.
Under ACRP Project 02-65, research was conducted by Metron Aviation, in association with ACA Associates, Inc., Environmental Consulting Group, Futurepast, Inc., and LMI. As part of the research, the team explored different alternative fuel-tracking mechanisms including physical segregation, mass-balance, book-and-chain, and hybrid approaches that included advantages, disadvantages, impediments to implementation and potential impacts. The decision support tool is available on (trb.org/acrp – url to blurb page). Appendix A provides a summary of sustainability frameworks and Chain-of-Custody requirements.

Status: Published as Report 165

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