The Air Force has flown a B-52 with a blend of synthetic fuel and JP-8 jet fuel powering all eight of the bomber’s engines. In September, the service successfully flew the B-52 with the synfuel-blend in just two engines. This latest test brings USAF “one step closer to allowing a domestic source of synthetic fuel to accomplish the Air Force mission in the future,” stated Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne. Faced with rising fuel costs, the service has set a goal to achieve a 50 percent reduction in use of standard aviation fuel by 2016. Next, it plans to test the synfuel in extreme cold weather.
Changes are coming this year for Airmen taking professional military education (PME) distance learning courses. Closer interactions with facilitators, a revised capstone course, and more feedback on test performance are meant to improve the overall experience for distance learning students, who often include members of the Air National Guard.