Plant-powered planes start to take off

The roar of jet engines splits the air over the U.S. Navy’s testing grounds in Patuxent River, Maryland, as an F-18 fighter plane takes to the skies. Powering this supersonic jet fighter is a fuel that is 50 percent petroleum-based and 50 percent derived from a seed called camelina.

Amid concerns about climate change, volatile oil prices and, most recently, a massive spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the U.S. Navy and the commercial aviation industry are testing biofuels derived from camelina and other sources as an alternative to crude oil:





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