Friday, September 30, 2011

Fire Scout completes flight on biofuel

U.S. Navy photo
PATUXENT RIVER, Md. - The Navy reached a milestone in its quest to gain energy independence today when an MQ-8B Fire Scout, built in part in Mississippi, successfully flew the first unmanned biofueled flight. The Fire Scout was fueled with a combination of JP-5 aviation fuel and plant-based camelina. The biofuel blend reduces carbon dioxide output by 75 percent when compared to conventional aviation fuel. The unmanned helicopter provides situational awareness, intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and targeting data to forward deployed warfighter, and can operate from all air capable ships and is currently providing ISR support in its first-land based deployment in U.S. Central Command area of responsibility. Fire Scout is the seventh aircraft to demonstrate the versatility of biofuel through its use in all facets of naval aviation. (Source: NNS, 09/30/11) Gulf Coast note: Fire Scouts are built in part at the Unmanned Systems Center in Moss Point, Miss.