"We believe this study will improve
understanding of contrails formation and
quantify potential benefits of renewable
alternate fuels in terms of aviation's impact on
the environment," said Ruben Del Rosario,
manager of NASA's Fixed Wing Project.
ACCESS flight operations are being staged from
NASA's Dryden Aircraft Operations Facility in
Palmdale, Calif., and will take place mostly
within restricted airspace over Edwards Air
Force Base, Calif.
flights, the DC-8's four CFM56 engines will be
powered by conventional JP-8 jet fuel, or a
50-50 blend of JP-8 and an alternative fuel of
hydroprocessed esters and fatty acids that comes
from camelina plants.
More than a dozen instruments mounted on the
Falcon jet will characterize the soot and gases
streaming from the DC-8, monitor the way exhaust
plumes change in composition as they mix with
air, and investigate the role emissions play in
Also, if weather conditions permit, the Falcon
jet will trail commercial aircraft flying in the
Southern California region, in coordination with
air traffic controllers, to survey the exhaust
emissions from a safe distance of 10 miles.