Boeing, Embraer to open joint biojet research center in Brazil

By Ron Kotrba | May 13, 2014

Two leading aerospace companies, Boeing and Embraer S.A., have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to open a joint research center to advance a sustainable aviation biofuel industry in Brazil.

Under the MOU, the two companies will perform joint biofuel research, in addition to funding and coordinating research with Brazilian universities and other institutions. The research will focus on technologies that address gaps in a supply chain for sustainable biojet fuel in Brazil, such as feedstock production and processing technologies. The new research center is to be located in São José dos Campos Technology Park.

“Boeing is working aggressively around the world to expand the supply of sustainable aviation biofuel and reduce aviation’s carbon emissions,” said Julie Felgar, managing director of environmental strategy and integration, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “With our joint biofuel research center, Boeing and Embraer are making a strong commitment toward a successful, sustainable aviation biofuel industry in Brazil.”

“Embraer is committed in supporting the development of sustainable biofuels for aviation and the joint efforts with Boeing will undoubtedly contribute to the company continuing to be in the forefront of research in this area,” says Mauro Kern, executive vice president, engineering and technology, Embraer. “Brazil has tradition in the area of alternative fuels and enormous potential yet to be explored in bioenergy research.”

“Boeing and Embraer have a tremendous opportunity to work together to enhance Brazil’s aviation biofuel capabilities, as well as the global industry’s access to aviation biofuel,” said Al Bryant, vice president, Boeing research & technology-Brazil.

In 2013, Boeing, Embraer and the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa of the State

of São Paulo (FAPESP) completed an action plan—Flightpath to Aviation Biofuels in

Brazil—that identified gaps in a potential biofuel supply chain. The joint research between Boeing and Embraer will help address those gaps.

More than 1,500 passenger flights using biojet fuel have been conducted around the world since it was approved for use in 2011.


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