Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

CleanTechnica
It's showtime for camelina, a modest, weedy little plant that has started to make a big splash in the biofuel world. The U.S. Air Force took camelina under its wing a couple of years ago and tested it out on the A-10C Thunderbolt II, and it must have done pretty well because for the first time ever a camelina based jet fuel has been used by the Thunderbirds, the Air Force's official aerial demonstration team.

Aviation

Legendary Air Force Thunderbirds Give Camelina Jet Biofuel a Workout

It’s showtime for camelina, a modest, weedy little plant that has started to make a big splash in the biofuel world. The U.S. Air Force took camelina under its wing a couple of years ago and tested it out on the A-10C Thunderbolt II, and it must have done pretty well because for the first time ever a camelina based jet fuel has been used by the Thunderbirds, the Air Force’s official aerial demonstration team.

air force thunderbirds use camelina in air showsIt’s showtime for camelina, a modest, weedy little plant that has started to make a big splash in the biofuel world. The U.S. Air Force took camelina under its wing a couple of years ago and tested it out on the A-10C Thunderbolt II, and it must have done pretty well because for the first time ever a camelina based jet fuel has been used by the Thunderbirds, the Air Force’s official aerial demonstration team. The decision to use camelina for the Thunderbirds is significant because it underscores the U.S. military’s evolving mission of bringing new sustainable technology to the civilian world. Appropriately enough the first show with camelina took place for the Joint Services Open House last week at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland.

The U.S. Air Force and Sustainability

The Air Force summed up its role in the military sustainability mission quite nicely in a recent press release with a statement from the Thunderbirds’ lead pilot and commander, Lt. Col. Case Cunningham, who said, “The mission is to represent the pride, precision and professionalism of the nearly 700,000 Airmen of our Air Force — at the same time, we are showing the Air Force’s dedication to alternative fuel.” If anyone in the viewing audience has any lingering doubts about the performance potential of biofuels, a look at the Thunderbirds’ hair raising stunts ought to put that to rest.

The Thunderbirds and Nellis Air Force Base

The Thunderbirds are headquartered at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, suitably enough, because the facility has emerged as an early leader in the U.S. military’s shift away from fossil fuels. Nellis AFB installed its first solar panels back in 2007. The giant 14-megawatt installation was the largest of its kind at the time, and the base is considering installing another 18 megawatts. As a matter of fact, the Air Force has become one of the top purchasers of alternative energy in the U.S., and it is developing a portable solar power system that can be shipped overseas in a standard container.

Image: Thunderbirds courtesy U.S. Air Force.

 
Appreciate CleanTechnica’s originality? Consider becoming a CleanTechnica Member, Supporter, Technician, or Ambassador — or a patron on Patreon.
 
 

Advertisement
 
Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

Written By

Tina specializes in military and corporate sustainability, advanced technology, emerging materials, biofuels, and water and wastewater issues. Views expressed are her own. Follow her on Twitter @TinaMCasey and Google+.

Comments

You May Also Like

Clean Transport

From the Electrovan to trucks, airplanes and locomotives, GM is finally having its hydrogen fuel cell moment, with an assist from the Army.

Batteries

The US Department of Defense is eyeballing energy efficient trucks and silicon EV batteries to cut down on climate-killing fossil fuels.

Autonomous Vehicles

Joe Biden will be the next president of the United States of America, and Kamala Harris will break through many barriers to become the...

Energy Efficiency

Tinker Air Force Base has a head start on the road to an energy efficient, carbon negative -- yes, carbon negative -- US Department...

Copyright © 2021 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.