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The impact of sustainable aviation fuels on aircraft fuel line ice formation and pump performance

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posted on 2023-02-01, 10:51 authored by Judith Ugbeh, Mark Carpenter

  

A recirculating fuel test rig capable of cooling fuel from ambient to -30 °C within 4 hours was built by Airbus to simulate conditions in an aircraft wing tank and allow characterisation of ice accretion. The key characteristic was the pressure drop across an inline fuel strainer for the different SAF explored but visual analysis of ice accretion on the strainer mesh (filters used in protecting fuel feed pumps) was also performed for individual experimental runs for comparison. Measurements revealed that 100% conventional fuel exhibited a higher propensity to strainer blockage compared to the SAF tested. However, all SAF blends behaved differently as the blending ratio with Jet A-1 fuel had an impact on the pressure differential at different temperatures. Data from this work are essential to establish confidence in the safe operation of future aircraft fuel systems that will potentially be compatible with 100 % SAF.

Funding

Airbus Operations (Reference ID: 1100152106)

Industrial CASE Account - Cranfield University 2015

Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council

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Authoriser (e.g. PI/supervisor)

m.d.carpenter@cranfield.ac.uk

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