Vegetable oil tested on NZ flight
A passenger plane has successfully completed a two-hour test flight partly powered by vegetable oil.
Air New Zealand hailed the flight as a "milestone" in the development of sustainable fuels that could lower aeroplane emissions and cut costs.
One engine of the Boeing 747-400 was fueled by a 50-50 mixture of jatropha plant oil and standard A1 jet fuel.
A Virgin Atlantic test flight in February used fuel derived from a blend of Brazilian babassu nuts and coconuts.
In Auckland on Tuesday, a range of tests were completed both on the ground and during the flight, said Air New Zealand Chief Pilot David Morgan.
He said the oil from the plum-sized jatropha fruit performed "well through both the fuel system and engine".