Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport (BJC) in Broomfield, Colorado, says it aims to be the first airport in the state to fully transition to supplying unleaded avgas for all piston-engine aircraft.
The county-owned airport northwest of Denver announced Oct. 4 that it has accelerated its timeline to offer 100-octane unleaded (100UL) avgas in the next two to three years, well before an industry-FAA target date of 2030 to eliminate the use of leaded fuel in piston-engine aircraft.
Already, BJC is in the process of switching from the supply of 100 Low Lead to UL94 unleaded avgas, which is compatible with two-thirds of its based fleet of piston aircraft. The airport has purchased a new fuel truck and 12,000-gal. storage tank for UL94, which it expects will be available by next fall.
In addition, BJC is working to secure FAA grant funding to assist fixed-base operators Sheltair and Signature with the purchase of unleaded fuel tanks. It will provide rent incentives to flight schools to offset the cost of applying for the supplemental type certificates necessary for each aircraft to operate on an approved unleaded fuel.
The fueling infrastructure for UL94 is “entirely compatible” with 100UL, which can be used across the range of piston-engine aircraft, the airport said. As new, high-octane unleaded avgas becomes more widely available, BJC will “proactively and fully transition” to the fuel.
“Our team’s commitment to innovative solutions and community collaboration is why the airport’s full transition will be well in advance of the FAA deadline,” Airport Director Paul Anslow said. “The aviation industry is working to scale production of 100UL for the larger market, and we feel confident the availability will rapidly increase while the price decreases. Our goal is to be the first airport in the state that fully transitions to unleaded fuel.”
Categorized as a reliever airport for Denver International Airport, BJC is the third busiest airport in Colorado, according to owner Jefferson County. It is home to 400 aircraft and 50 businesses.