RAF

RAF successfully refuels Typhoon and C-130 mid-air using sustainable fuel blend

Watch: RAF achieved its first Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) blend air-to-air refuelling of a Typhoon and C-130 Hercules aircraft.

The Royal Air Force has achieved its first Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) blend air-to-air refuelling of a Typhoon and C-130 Hercules aircraft.

An RAF Voyager delivered the fuel to the aircraft – the Voyager completed a ground-breaking trial flight in November 2022 during which it flew on 100% SAF.

Leftover fuel from that test was mixed with regular fuel at around 46-48%, the RAF said.

The RAF worked with BP to re-certify the mixture and ensure the required standards for a safe and effective mission.

Sustainable Aviation Fuel is created from waste-based sustainable feedstocks like used cooking oil.

It cuts lifecycle carbon emissions on average by up to 80% compared to conventional jet fuel.

It is hoped, in time, increased use of SAF should help to improve the RAF's operational resilience and reduce its reliance on global supply chains and fossil fuels.

Watch: RAF completes first flight using only sustainable aviation fuel.

Squadron Leader Gaz Evans, RAF Supply Project Manager, said: "We have learnt a great deal during this trial and now have confidence in our ability to use blends of Sustainable Aviation Fuel now and in the future.

"The trial proved there is no detriment to performance as we strive towards reduced emissions targets.

"This was a first for both Typhoon and the Hercules and we believe that we are the first Air Force to conduct an Air-to-Air refuel operation with a SAF bend at this level (46-48%).

"We are hugely grateful to Air BP for their expertise in assisting us with the re-manufacture and re-certification process to enable this successful result."

Defence Minister Baroness Goldie said: "This is another key achievement in the Royal Air Force's remarkable progress to increase their use of sustainable fuel.

"With potential benefits for the environment and operational resilience, this important work alongside expert defence industry and scientific teams in the UK is crucial for the RAF's future resilience."