Air New Zealand will test new alternative aviation bio-fuel

Air New Zealand has announced that it will be one of the world''s first commercial airlines to run a trial of using bio fuel in its aircraft.

On Friday 28 September, the airline said it had signed a memorandum of understanding with Boeing and Rolls-Royce; that the three would work towards ensuring the commercial aviation sector becomes more environmentally friendly.

The first trial of a bio-fuelled Rolls-Royce engine on a Boeing B747 without any passengers on board will be held in late 2008 or early 2009, the airline announced.

The aircraft will not fly entirely on bio fuel for the test run; one engine will run on a blended biofuel-kerosene mix, while the other three engines will run on regular aviation fuel. Auckland Airport is the most likely site from where the test plane will take off.