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Meeting: Thursday, April 10
Speaker: Paul Millner
Hayward Airport - Executive Hangar 13
Refreshments & BBQ 5:30pm - 6:45pm / Meeting 7:00pm
Please join us for a presentation by Paul Millner on aviation gasoline development.
Paul Millner is a degreed and licensed professional engineer who worked in Chevron’s refining and chemicals business for over thirty eight years. Paul’s ultimate assignment at Chevron was as the Richmond Refinery’s Manager of Business Development. Since 2002, his duties included development work on unleaded avgas.
Paul is a principal in Cardinal Flyers Online (CFO), an aviation “type” club that provides support for owners and pilots of the Cessna Cardinal. CFO has won a number of accolades, and is viewed by some as aviation’s pacesetter type club.
Paul has contributed to a variety of process industry and aviation periodicals, including a widely acclaimed article, ‘Avgas 2020’. Like many aspects of aviation, the composition of and handling practices for avgas have grown from sometimes painful experience of many decades. The most recent pressure on avgas supply is a concerted effort by regulators and non-governmental environmental organizations to “get the lead out” of the last fuel product to contain lead. Though some have simplistically suggested that refiners just stop adding lead, that approach would result in an avgas that would not meet the engine requirements of over 70% of the avgas demand.
The last previous concerted effort to address fundamental aviation gasoline formulation began prior to World War II and continued through airline use of piston engines in the 1950’s. Since the first flight of the Boeing 707 in 1957, avgas demand has declined by over 90%. Current production volumes cannot economically justify an industry fuel reinvention effort on the order of those pursued between 1937 and 1957. But the good news is that we are a little bit smarter, and technology is a whole lot better, as a variety of concerns undertake to solve this how-to-blend-a-fuel-for-high-performance-engines problem 75 years after the first time around.
Paul will share a brief history of avgas, and outline the ongoing efforts by a number of players designed to continue a reasonably priced avgas supply that offers ongoing support for the existing fleet, and possibly even better performance for the new and retrofitted aircraft in the future.