CAAS Contributes to Efforts to Reduce Aircraft Fuel Consumption and Carbon Emissions
2 Feb 2010
Demonstration green flight, with reduction of flight time by 30 minutes, saved 10,686 kilograms of fuel and cut carbon emissions by 33,769 kilograms
The employment of air traffic management best practices and initiatives by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) contributed to significant reductions in flight time, fuel consumption and carbon emissions by the world’s first multi-sector demonstration green flight from Los Angeles to Singapore via Tokyo.
The Singapore Airlines demonstration green flight, which arrived in Singapore at 0132hrs local time today, is another initiative under the Asia and Pacific Initiative to Reduce Emissions (ASPIRE). ASPIRE aims to accelerate the development and implementation of air traffic management procedures, capitalise on innovations, technologies and best practices, and facilitate harmonisation of air traffic management on key Asia and Pacific routes towards reducing aviation emissions globally.
Mr Yap Ong Heng, Director-General, CAAS, said, “The first multi-sector demonstration green flight clearly demonstrates the operational efficiency and environmental benefits that can be realised from employing best practices and technologies in air traffic management. The significant reductions in flight time, fuel consumption and carbon emissions provide benchmarks which Air Navigation Service Providers and airlines can work towards in the air transport industry’s collaborative commitment and efforts to cut down carbon emissions.
Air Traffic Management Best Practices and Initiatives
Fellow Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) in the United States and Japan collaborated with CAAS to allow the Singapore Airlines aircraft to operate in optimum air traffic conditions in all phases of the flight ie. fromdeparture1tocruising2toarrival3.
At thedeparturephase, the aircraft was accorded priority clearance from air traffic control for taxiing and departure. The time taken for the aircraft to get from the parking bay to the runway was minimised by assigning it the shortest possible route, and the aircraft was given an unimpeded take-off without restrictions on speed or aircraft level. This lessened the aircraft’s power consumption and thereby fuel burn.
At thecruisingphase, the User Preferred Route and Dynamic Airborne Reroute Procedures were employed allowing the pilot to capitalise on prevailing wind patterns to alter the aircraft’s flight path to shorten its flight time and achieve greater flight efficiency. In addition, Performance Based Navigation (PBN) procedures such as a reduction in the lateral and longitudinal separation among flights were employed, allowing the aircraft to use preferred flight paths and levels, enhanced flight efficiency with no reduction in safety.
Finally, at the arrival phase, the Optimised Profile Descent technique was used to allow the aircraft to fly with engines set at idle in continuous descent from a high altitude to land at Changi Airport, significantly reducing fuel burn. Upon landing, the aircraft was also assigned the shortest possible route from the runway to the parking bay to minimise fuel consumption.
By implementing air traffic management best practices for the aircraft throughout its flight, complementing the measures implemented by the airline, the demonstration green flight shaved off 30 minutes of flight time and cut 10,686 kilograms of fuel and 33,769 kilograms in carbon emissions, as compared to a regular flight.
Mr Yap said, “The air traffic management best practices employed for this flight from end-to-end have shown encouraging results. CAAS, in its role as an air navigation service provider, will work closely with the airlines on how the procedures and techniques used for this ASPIRE flight can be applied to more flights. CAAS will also continue with its efforts and contributions to further improve air navigation to increase flight efficiency and reduce aircraft carbon emissions.”
Enclosure: Fact Sheet on ASPIRE
About the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS)
CAAS’ mission is to “Grow a safe, vibrant air hub and civil aviation system, making a key contribution to Singapore's success”. CAAS' roles are to enable the growth of the air hub and aviation industry, oversee and promote safety in the industry, provide air navigation services, and develop Singapore as a centre of excellence for aviation knowledge and human resource development.
CAAS and the Environment
In its role as an air navigation service provider, besides providing quality air traffic services, CAAS also actively adopt best practices and initiatives that enhance aircraft operational efficiency and contribute to environmental protection. At the international and regional levels, CAAS has participated in various trials and initiatives, such as collaborating with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on straightening routes over the Bay of Bengal and South China Sea to allow for shorter more direct air routes, and the implementation of Reduced Vertical Separation Minima to improve airspace capacity and flight safety and efficiency. At Changi Airport, CAAS has conducted Optimised Profile Descent operational trials with Singapore Airlines in which the aircraft carry out a smooth continuous descent to reduce fuel burn and carbon emissions during landings.
CAAS has received special recognition from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) for upholding high standards in the provision of air navigation services, supporting airline operational efficiencies and reducing aircraft carbon emissions. In 2009, CAAS was awarded the prestigious IATA Eagle Award for the “Best Air Navigation Service Provider” and CAPA’s inaugural “Air Navigation Services Provider of the Year” Award.
CAAS also participates actively in ICAO’s aviation environmental protection initiatives and efforts. The Director-General of CAAS, Mr Yap Ong Heng, was Chairperson of the ICAO High Level Meeting on International Aviation and Climate Change held in Montreal in October 2009 where ICAO Contracting States adopted an enhanced Programme of Action to address aviation emissions.
- 1Departure refers to the phase of the aircraft’s push-back from the parking bay at the departure airport, taxiing to the runway and take-off
- 2Cruising refers to the phase that the aircraft, after airborne, operates at a constant altitude for a significant amount of time
- 3Arrival refers to the phase when the aircraft starts to descent, land and taxi to the parking stand at the arrival airport
For more information, please contact:
Ms Satwinder Kaur
Senior Manager (Corporate Communications)
Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore
Tel: (65) 6541 2912
Mobile: (65) 9621 1087
Ms Genevieve Yeow
Senior Executive (Corporate Communications)
Tel: (65) 6541 2082
Mobile: (65) 9829 0049
Fax: (65) 6542 0246