Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Embraer completes 100% SAF flight testing of GTF-powered E195-E2 aircraft

Embraer and Pratt & Whitney have successfully tested a GTF-powered E195-E2 aircraft on 100% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). The goal of this recent test flight, with one engine running on 100% SAF, was to confirm that both Pratt & Whitney’s GTF engines and Embraer’s E-Jets E2 family can fly on 100% SAF without any compromise to safety or performance.

The GTF-powered E195-E2 aircraft completed two days of ground tests at Fort Lauderdale International Airport, culminating in a 70-minute flight test at Vero Beach Regional Airport in Florida.

At the moment, both GTF engines and Embraer aircraft are certified to operate with SAF blended up to 50% with standard Jet A/A1 kerosene. The future specification will enable blends of up to 100% SAF to maximize the emissions reduction potential of using fuel derived from sustainable, non-fossil-based feedstocks.

The test validated that GTF engines and the E-Jets E2 family are compatible with 100% SAF.
The test validated that GTF engines and the E-Jets E2 family are compatible with 100% SAF. Credit: Pratt & Whitney

“The E2 is already the most efficient single-aisle aircraft flying today, saving up to 25% CO2 emissions compared to previous generation aircraft. This reduction in emissions can be increased up to an impressive 85% with 100% SAF. Replacement of older aircraft with new-generation products and scaling up SAF production are the two most effective actions commercial aviation can take now to achieve a significant reduction in emissions,” said Rodrigo Silva e Souza, vice president of strategy and sustainability at Embraer Commercial Aviation.

“Embraer and Pratt & Whitney are leading the industry with products that are more efficient for our customers and more sustainable for our society. This test demonstrates that the E2 is ready for 100% SAF certification and operation once the industry finalizes standards.”

The SAF used by Pratt & Whitney and Embraer was 100% Hydroprocessed Esters, and Fatty Acids Synthetic Paraffinic Kerosine (HEFA-SPK) acquired from World Energy. HEFA-SPK is a specific type of hydrotreated renewable feedstock fuel used in aviation and is considered a leading alternative replacement for conventional jet fuel by the Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuels Initiative (CAAFI) due to the sustainability of its feedstock.

Certified for operation on 50% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and successfully tested on 100% SAF, the engines are capable of even lower carbon emissions, which will help the industry meet its target of net zero emissions by 2050.