GE Aviation Taps Naverus Tech for Low-Fuel Landings

Startups might not be able to convince the FAA to try out a new, fuel-saving way to guide planes to their landings at airports around the country, but what about GE?. On Thursday, AA flight 1916 used technology based on the work of startup Naverus.

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Hop on board American Airlines Flight 1916, as it demonstrates the fuel-saving power of green IT in aviation this morning. The flight from Texas to Connecticut is using Required Navigation Performance (RNP) technology from GE Aviation — based largely on technology General Electric got when it bought startup Naverus in November — to show how continuous descents can save lots of fuel compared to the step-wise, descend and level-off flight patterns now used by air traffic controllers around the country. According to GE’s Twitter feed, the plane has landed — we’re waiting to hear back on how much fuel it might have saved.  The FAA’s NextGen airspace modernization plan calls for switching to this kind of technology at airports around the country, and GE has identified aviation as one focus of its $10 billion Ecomagination green technology line. Aviation accounts for about 2 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, making it a target for green tech efforts including biofuels.