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    386th Air Expeditionary Wing transitions to commercial jet fuel

    386th Air Expeditionary Wing transitions to commercial jet fuel

    Photo By Christopher Campbell | Staff Sgt. Robert Bradley, 386th Expeditionary Logistics Readiness Squadron, fuels...... read more read more

    UNDISCLOSED LOCATIONThe 386th Air Expeditionary Wing has joined the list of Air Force units making the switch from military specification fuel to commercial fuel.

    The Defense Logistics Agency Energy has been advocating for the military's move to commercial fuel for the last few years, touting the cost savings and fuel availability as significant benefits.

    According to a 2011 article by DLA Energy, the Air Force is the largest consumer of jet fuel among the military services, and spent $7.2 billion on 2.7 billion gallons of fuel in 2010. A spokesperson for the Air Force Petroleum Agency was quoted as saying the move away from military specification fuel, known as JP8, to commercial fuel, known as Jet A in the continental U.S., is going to provide a huge dollar savings.

    The Air Force, in partnership with DLA Energy, has been in the process of converting to commercial specification fuel in the CONUS over the past couple years with much success.

    The 386th Expeditionary Logistics Squadron Fuel Flight received its first shipment of commercial fuel, commonly known as Jet A-1 outside of the continental U.S., July 16, and immediately began the task of injecting the needed additives.

    JP8 fuel is already injected with these additives and because of this, the storage, production and transportation of JP8 is much more costly than commercial fuel.

    "In the commercial world the additives that we use are not normally included in jet fuel," said Senior Master Sgt. Gregory Carrow, Air Force Petroleum Agency. "Receiving fully additized fuel from a commercial source requires segregated storage and transportation. By buying a commercial fuel and injecting the additives later in the supply chain, DLA Energy can procure the fuel at a cheaper price."

    Here at the 386th AEW, members of the 386th ELRS Fuel Flight are responsible for injecting these additives.

    "Jet A-1 comes with one additive; a static dissipater additive which prevents static buildup in the fuel when we transfer it through the lines," said Master Sgt. Michael Dunblazier, 386th ELRS Fuels Flight superintendent. "We add two additional additives, the fuel system icing inhibitor, which bonds to the water in fuel and prevents it from freezing at high altitudes; we also have the corrosion inhibitor/lubricity improver which acts as a lubricant to all the fuel systems."

    At least five days a week, Airmen in the 386th ELRS receive fuel deliveries which can range from 108,000 to 144,000 gallons daily. In above 100-degree temperatures, the fuel technicians inject additives and test levels to ensure the fuel is up to standard. Not the most pleasant of tasks, but with such far reaching benefits, definitely a worthy one.



    Date Taken: 07.26.2013
    Date Posted: 07.27.2013 06:49
    Story ID: 110932
    Hometown: ATLANTIC CITY, NJ, US
    Hometown: KNOB NOSTER, MO, US

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