Full SynFuel Flight for C-17:

The Air Force has flown, for the first time, a C-17 entirely fueled by a synthetic fuel blend in all four fuel tanks. An earlier flight had demonstrated the use of the Fischer-Tropsch synthetic and JP-8 blend in one tank. After the Oct. 22 flight, the lead pilot for the test, Maj. Scott Sullivan, with the Air Force Flight Test Center at Edwards AFB, Calif., said, “There was no discernible difference between” the pure jet fuel and synthetic blend. The Air Force expects to certify the synfuel blend for the entire C-17 airlifter fleet early next year. It certified the B-52 bomber fleet in August. Some analysts question whether there will be enough synthetic fuel production to meet the service’s needs.