Science Teacher Plans First Coast-to-Coast Biofuel Flight
by Megan Elliott (Flying Magazine) First transcontinental flight using aviation biofuel in a certified light aircraft. — High-school science teacher Ross McCurdy is planning the first transcontinental flight using aviation biofuel in a certified light aircraft. McCurdy will launch from North Central Airport near Providence, Rhode Island, in a Cessna 182 around April 16 to fly 2,500 nautical miles to Santa Monica, California; he’ll depart from Santa Monica on Earth Day, April 22.
Along the way, McCurdy will host events to promote clean energy, aviation and science education. His 12-year-old son will accompany him on the trip, along with several other pilots who will join for portions of the flight; most are members of the Paramus Flying Club, which owns the plane.
McCurdy has planned stops at University Park Airport, in Pennsylvania; Moraine Airport, in Ohio; Walnut Ridge Regional Airport, in Arkansas; Grand Prairie Municipal Airport, in Texas; Dona Ana County Airport, in New Mexico; and Chandler Municipal Airport in Arizona, and has stashed his special fuel blend at each airport.
The fuel, a 50-50 mix of biofuel — made from used cooking oil — and Jet A will fuel the Cessna 182’s SMA aviation diesel engine. This engine is also 30 to 40 percent more efficient than the avgas-burning stock engine it replaced. READ MORE and MORE (TurnTo10.com; update 4/17/2016)