Avfuel Corporation—a leading global supplier of aviation fuel and services—is using its logistics and distribution expertise to collaborate with General Aviation Modifications, Inc., (GAMI), on the commercialization of the engineering company’s high-octane unleaded avgas, G100ULTM.
On Sept. 1, GAMI received a functional fleet-wide approval from the FAA for G100UL avgas via the long-standing STC process, fulfilling a key first step to market introduction.
“Today is a momentous occasion for the aviation industry,” said Craig Sincock, Avfuel Corporation’s president and CEO.
“Aviators have long been in search of an FAA-approved, viable, unleaded avgas solution, and GAMI receiving a functional fleet-wide approval for its G100UL is cause for celebration.
“Avfuel, via Avfuel Technology Initiatives Corporation (ATIC), is proud to collaborate with GAMI on the logistics of the fuel’s distribution.
“Further, we extend a hearty thank you to GAMI for its decades of dedication to the leaded fuel problem, and the FAA for its thorough, steadfast vetting of G100UL.”
Tim Roehl, president and co-founder of GAMI, said, “It’s a great day for general aviation! Not only can we look forward to a lead free fuel future, the benefits of the G100UL will improve the maintainability and reliability of our engines, enhancing dispatchability and safety!”
GAMI co-founder, George Braly, said, “This is a big day for the industry. It means that for a lot of our general aviation communities, and especially for a high fraction on the West Coast, relief is on the way.
“And it means that our industry will be able to go into the future and prosper, and provide the essential infrastructure for this country for everything from Angel Flights to critical training of our future airline pilots.”
Along with earning the FAA’s approval to use G100UL in all spark-ignition piston aircraft and engines in the general aviation fleet, G100UL has also successfully proved to be able to replace and mix with 100LL avgas, a key characteristic for an unleaded avgas solution as it embarks on the ambitious task of replacing low-lead avgas location by location.
While the industry rightfully celebrates this milestone, ATIC will continue its work with GAMI to take the fuel from test batches in the lab to airport fuel tanks, using its fuel supply expertise to help the engineering company and industry counterparts navigate the complexities of commercialization.
“We look forward to working with GAMI and all industry stakeholders—producers, distributors, trade organizations, FBOs and airports—as, together, we make unleaded fuel a reality by moving into the commercialization stage of this product,” said Sincock.
“We encourage aviators to help this process by continuing to make their voices heard in support of unleaded avgas by communicating with their respective trade organizations.”
In particular, ATIC will support the initiative by handling the logistics of G100UL’s distribution, helping to establish a supply chain for responsibly bringing the unleaded avgas to market on a commercial scale.
Together, GAMI and ATIC will ensure G100UL avgas is available to all major distributors and vendors on an equitable basis in terms of access and economics.
“Our arrangement is that any qualified refiner or blender of existing aviation fuels will be eligible to produce and sell [G100UL] subject to the requirements that the FAA has approved,” Braly said.
ATIC has been in collaboration with GAMI for many years regarding the development of G100UL. ATIC will continue to provide its expertise to GAMI in an effort to work together—along with all industry counterparts—to commercialize unleaded avgas.
While the commercialization process will take time, aviators need only look to the horizon.
“G100UL avgas will expand nationally over a period of a few years at a pace driven by the rate at which the production and distribution infrastructure can be put in place.” said Braly.
“The first customers for the fuel are likely to be entities like flight schools. From there, the fuel will gradually become widely available as production of distribution infrastructure is developed.”
“Avfuel has worked to advance the unleaded avgas effort for many years, applying its expertise in areas of logistics, infrastructure and market development,” said Sincock.
“Our team has done so in conjunction with a number of coalitions, such as ASTM International, the Coordinated Research Council (CRC), the PAFI program and EAGLE, as well as engaging with many trade organizations and industry counterparts—including GAMI.
“It has always been our intention to do whatever we can to advance an unleaded avgas solution.
“Quite simply, we owe it to our industry, our communities and the companies that have worked diligently toward a suitable answer to help make a solution work.”