04/10/2022 – Sustainability / Aviation / Fuel / Singapore / Neste / Safran / Bell / Helicopter / SAF

South East Asia’s first helicopter flight using sustainable aviation fuel takes off from Singapore
South East Asia’s first helicopter flight using sustainable aviation fuel takes off from Singapore

Bell’s next generation five-seater helicopter, the Bell 505, fuelled with Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), recently took off from Seletar Airport in Singapore to record South East Asia’s first ever helicopter flight fuelled with SAF.




This remarkable milestone was achieved by a close co-operation between Bell, Safran Helicopter Engines and Neste, with Jet Aviation and Shell Aviation enabling the blended SAF to be uplifted through their facilities at Seletar Airport. The demonstration flight showcases the commitment of the business aviation community, as an integral component of the aviation industry, to the industry’s ambitious emissions reduction goals and adopting SAF as a key element in helping achieve these goals.


Reducing GHGs by up to 80%




Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 80 per cent over the fuel’s life-cycle compared to fossil jet fuel use (Calculated with established life cycle assessment (LCA) methodologies, such as CORSIA methodology). SAF can currently be used up to 50 per cent blended with conventional jet fuel, and Safran helicopter engines are already certified to operate on up to 50 per cent SAF.




“Bell has been in South East Asia for more than 40 years, and we are proud to operate the first SAF helicopter flight here on our Bell 505,” said Jacinto Monge, Managing Director of Asia Pacific, Bell. “Today’s flight demonstrates our commitment to incorporating SAF into our customer demonstration aircraft globally, supporting Textron’s Achieve 2025 Sustainable Footprint goal for 20-per-cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.”




“We strongly believe in SAF, as it contributes to significantly reducing CO2 emissions,” enthused Valerie Patuel, MD of Safran Helicopter Engines Asia, and CEO & Country General Delegate of Safran Singapore. “As all our helicopter engines, the Arrius 2R, is already certified to operate on up to 50% SAF, and we are fully ready to assist all Bell 505 operators worldwide in their transition from conventional fossil fuels to SAF. With our products, we are proud to play an active role in the development of decarbonisation initiatives in Asia Pacific,” she added.


Supporting sustainable aviation worldwide




“The ambitious emissions reduction goals of the aviation industry can only be achieved through wide-scale adoption and use of sustainable aviation fuel and co-operation across the stakeholders in the aviation ecosystem. With today’s demo flight, we showcase that SAF can safely and easily be used also for helicopter operations,” asserted Sami Jauhiainen, Vice President APAC, Renewable Aviation at Neste. “I am also proud that this milestone was achieved in Singapore. With the expansion of our Singapore refinery nearing completion, and the on-going modification of our Rotterdam refinery, we will be able to produce up to 1.5 million tons of SAF by the end of 2023, ready to support aviation globally and in the Asia-Pacific region,” he added.




SAF delivers the performance of conventional jet fuel but with a significantly smaller carbon footprint on a life cycle basis. Neste MY SAF is produced 100 per cent from sustainably-sourced, renewable waste and residue raw materials, such as used cooking oil and animal fat waste. Indeed, as the company advises, Neste MY Sustainable Aviation Fuel is ‘a today solution, commercially available and in use worldwide’.

Latest issue – Vol 3/22
Lead stories
– Infrastructure focus
– Green gains
– Industry 4.0: Taking connectivity into hyperdrive  
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