UD among 14 schools forming jet fuel research center

The University of Dayton has been selected as one of 14 schools across the nation to form a new Air Transportation Center of Excellence that will “take environmentally friendly, alternative jet fuel technology to the next level,” Federal Aviation Administration Secretary Anthony Foxx announced Friday.

The universities will “explore ways to meet the environmental and energy goals that as part of the Next Generation Air Transportation System” to support President Barack Obama’s national plan to address climate change, Foxx said.

“Airlines and their customers will both benefit from the work developing cleaner fuel that supports the environment and continued aviation growth,” Foxx said in the news release.

The FAA is expected to fund the center with $4 million each year for 10 years. The goal includes to put 1 billion gallons of alternate jet fuel in use by 2018, the FAA said. Undergraduates and graduate students will be included in the research projects.

“It’s a great opportunity for the University of Dayton Research Institute,” said Steven Zabarnick, acting head of the energy and environmental engineering division. “It fits in very well with the work we’ve been doing over the past 20 years.”

Zabarnick said the program is very broad. “It covers alternative jet fuel production, development, evaluation, testing, and then there’s also a component on air craft noise and air craft emissions.”

UD was chosen for its expertise, along with Boston University, Oregon State University, Purdue University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Washington, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Georgia Institute of Technology, Pennsylvania State University, Stanford University, the University of Hawaii, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of Tennessee.

The FAA also has Centers of Excellence with 75 universities to on related topics.

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