General Aviation News

Flight Training University Switches to Unleaded Aviation Fuel

Flight Training University Switches to Unleaded Aviation Fuel

The School of Aviation Sciences at Utah Valley University (UVU) has switched to fully unleaded aviation fuel in its flight training program to improve sustainability and reduce maintenance costs.

The public university in Utah said it is the first collegiate flight training program offered in the United States that uses unleaded aviation fuel.

UVU has a fleet of 25 aircraft consisting of Diamond DA40s and Piper Seminoles. Using the new type of fuel, these aircraft will expect fewer mechanical issues and requires less maintenance work.

“UL94 will drastically reduce maintenance costs for UVU as it burns cleaner, helping the engine components,” said John James, director of aviation maintenance at UVU. “Lower maintenance costs translate into a reduction in aircraft downtime and, ultimately, a more efficient and cost-effective training experience for students.”

Partnering with Swift Fuels, a fuel research and development company based in Indiana, the first shipment of unleaded aviation fuel known as UL94 arrived at the school’s fuel farm on April 13.

UL94 is an unleaded aviation gasoline (avgas) suitable for low-compression piston aircraft engines. It has been more commonly used in cars, as piston aircraft engines need a higher-octane fuel, which requires a lead additive.

Swift Fuels currently produces UL94, and the company is also testing a higher-octane unleaded avgas called UL102.

UVU has a Bachelor of Science in Aviation Management program that offers industry knowledge and general management skills applicable in the aerospace field.

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