After months of ground and flight trials, a premier military certification agency has cleared the indigenously produced bio-fuel for use in the military aircraft, the Defence Ministry said on Thursday.
The approval has paved the way for the Air Force to fly the first An-32 aircraft with a blend of bio-jet fuel on the Republic Day.
The decision was arrived in a meeting chaired by eminent scientists and Chief Executive of the Centre for Military Airworthiness and Certification (CEMILAC), Jaypal, after deliberations on the results of various checks and tests conducted on bio-jet fuel as per procedure recommended by top national and international certification agencies, it said.
"On being completely satisfied with the performance parameters, the agency has formally granted its approval for use of this fuel, produced from non-conventional source, that is, non-edible tree-borne oil to be used on military aircraft," the release said.
The bio-jet fuel is produced from seeds of Jatropha plant sourced from Chhattisgarh and processed at the Centre of Scientific and Industrial Research - Indian Institute of Petroleum (CSIR-IIP) lab at Dehradun.
Any hardware or software which is to be used on Indian military aircraft has to be cleared for use by CEMILAC before being inducted for regular use.
"This clearance is a major step for continued testing and eventual full certification of the bio-jet fuel for use on a commercial scale by civil aircraft as well," it said.