Tuesday, September 2, 2008

What Fuels Airlines?

Planes use a lot of expensive jet fuel, which costs airlines money, which drives ticket prices up, and causes a lot of pollution. In an effort to stop some of these problems with the airline industry, the FAA gave the X PRIZE Foundation a grant to explore a prize for developing renewable aviation fuels and technologies.

Over the course of the grant (another 12 months or so), the X PRIZE Foundation will talk to a number experts and bring together the best minds in the aviation and science communities to find ways to speed up the development and widespread use of energy efficient, environmentally friendly fuels. A key goal of this will be to NOT create harm in other areas; for example, if the answer is bio-fuels, how can we do this without displacing food crops? We’re still in the process of developing specific ideas and rules for such a competition, but we’re excited that with the FAA’s help, this will be another great environmentally friendly X PRIZE, to go hand in hand with the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE.

Does anyone out there have any ideas about how such a prize could work? We’re always open to and excited about hearing from the public!

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