Co2 Emissions Reduction via formation flight

Image credit: Tom Kent

Co2 Emissions

I had a quick look back over some of my PhD work in preparation of a new paper I’m writing. I found it slightly mad that I never really included any numbers on Co2 emissions.

So I’ve been working on some under the assumptions:

  • The emissions index of CO 2 per kg of fuel burnt is estimated to be roughly 3.16 [1]
  • A rough estimate of 600 dollars per metric tonne of fuel [2]

Singapore Airlines

Take Singapore Airlines as an example, on a single day some 200 flights could potentially fly in 100 formations pairs. This would save on average 6.7% of fuel against those same flights flying solo. This works out at 610 tonnes of fuel saved, and as a direct result would burn roughly 1,929 tonnes fewer of Co2. Not only that but they’d save 366k in the process but simply not buying the fuel.

That’s for a single day.

That’s like planting 704,085 trees a year and getting paid $133m for it.

Equivalent of planting 80 per hour:


And getting paid $190 per tree at the same time


Want to find out more?

Take a look a page I put together a while back to explore the datasets:

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Thomas E. Kent
Senior Research Associate in Applied Mathematics & Computer Science

A post-doctoral research associate in Bristol University’s Computer Science Department. Currently working on the T-B Phase project (Thales Bristol Partnership in Hybrid Autonomous Systems Engineering). I am interested in exploring how we can utilise AI, Machine Learning and Decision Making techniques within a number of key Multi-Agent Systems use-cases, e.g. Search and Rescue, Persistent Surveillance.