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CO2 Emission Reduction potential through improvements in technology from Civil Aviation Sector in India - A Case of Delhi-Mumbai Air Route

Author Affiliations

  • 1GEES, University of Birmingham, UK, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), INDIA
  • 2CEPT University, INDIA

Res. J. Recent Sci., Volume 1, Issue (ISC-2011), Pages 134-144,(2012)


Modern aircraft and engine technologies achieve fuel efficiencies of 3.5 litres per 100 passenger-kilometers. The A380 and B787 aircrafts are aiming for 3 litres per 100 passenger-kilometers. However, most airlines already use advanced technology and processes, making additional fuel efficiency improvement more difficult. But, India lags deeply in technological management system. A study by Down to Earth says that the flights that travel between Delhi-Mumbai are delayed for an hour and the delay cost per day is about 44 lakhs. The working paper deals with the emission reduction potential from Delhi-Mumbai Air route which is supposed to be the sixth busiest route in the world with more than 700 flights a week through improved technological options. Air craft and engine technologies have proved to be one of the best options for mitigating emissions from civil aviation sector. The traffic between the national and financial capitals contributes to over 50 per cent of the total Indian air traffic and enjoys load factors between 75-80 per cent through the year. According to a study by Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA) the average fuel wastage per flight in this route is 30% to 40%. Aviation fuel, produces about 2.158 kg of CO2 emissions per litre consumed. So in this regard this route has been taken up as priority for the study. According to base study1 , the route generated 5.62 Million Tonne(MT) of CO2, 3.03 MT of NOx, 0.57 MT of N2O and 0.15 MT of CH4 for the study period (2005-09) from 93481 flights that operated for that period. It was also found that the emissions from the direct flights in the route is higher than that of via flights due to the reason that the number of direct flights (77357) are more than that of via flights (14915) for the same period. The scope of the paper is to find out the CO2 emission reduction potential through three strategies in technological improvement which are installation of blended winglets, installation of dryers, and installation of air units while studying the various technological options available across the globe. The three strategies have been identifed after studying several strategies prevalent Internationally which can be applicable to Indian environment and state of affairs.


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