NHV and TotalEnergies fly first Offshore Wind SAF flight


The offshore wind industry has completed its first helicopter flight with sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). The flight was carried out by helicopter operator Noordzee Helikopters Vlaanderen (NHV) and aviation fuel supplier TotalEnergies, as part of a new long-term partnership. Words: Elena Lodge.

Bram de Backer, vice president, Offshore Wind NHV, said: “This is a huge milestone for NHV and the industry because it’s the first-time sustainable aviation fuel is used to support offshore wind [generation]. Investing in this kind of fuel is the first step in reducing the overall carbon footprint and making helicopter transportation more environmentally friendly.”

The flight, from the NHV headquarters, Ostend, flew a delegation of Elia, high-voltage transmission system operator, and Belgian politicians to Elia’s Offshore Grid (MOG 1). Located in the North Sea, the MOG 1 connects cables from offshore wind farms with the mainland.

The mission was fuelled by TotalEnergies SAF, which combines waste and residues like cooking oil with JET A-1 at a 30:70 ratio. Using SAF reduced the flight’s CO2 emissions by 27% and is estimated to reduce up to 90% of CO2 emissions over its entire life cycle, according to the fuel producer.

Joël Navaron, Aviation president, TotalEnergies, said: “The development of sustainable aviation fuel is one of the areas of TotalEnergies’ strategy to achieve its ambition of carbon neutrality by 2050.”