Tool helps evaluate full life-cycle of alternative fuels

Volpe, The National Transportation Systems Center

Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

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Volpe The National Transportation Systems Center

U.S. Department of Transportation Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

May 31, 2016


From Farm to Flight: Evaluating Canola-Based Jet Fuels


Alternative fuels can help reduce emissions, but the process of growing, processing, and refining crops for use as biofuels requires energy, too. 

A Volpe-developed tool is helping researchers perform full chain life-cycle assessments of alternative fuels, including canola-based jet fuels, and examine a range of energy scenarios across the transportation network.

  An image of a plane flying over a canola field.
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Coming Soon


The Future of Transportation: Safety, Opportunity, Innovation

From driverless cars to unmanned deliveries to smart cities, innovation and new technologies will enable a future with a safe, reliable transportation system that helps more Americans connect to economic opportunities.

Check back soon on our website for more on the presenters and dates for Volpe’s upcoming thought leadership speaker series, The Future of Transportation: Safety, Opportunity, Innovation.


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Volpe Staff at U.S. and International Events

Volpe staff were featured at the following events in May:

  • Michael Scarpino presented information about the government/industry initiative to train and increase awareness about compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicle fuel tank safety standards. Scarpino also showed a training video being developed for transit agencies that documents the process used by Los Angeles Metro Rail to safely defuel, decommission, and dispose of its CNG transit bus fuel tanks at the American Public Transportation Association’s Clean Propulsion & Support Technology Committee meeting held in conjunction with the 2016 Bus and Paratransit Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina, on May 17. 


  • Kevin Harnett briefed attendees at the National Motor Freight Traffic Association meeting on the Cybersecurity Guidebook for Cyber-Physical Vehicle Systems on May 16-17. The meeting’s focus was to help improve cyber security for heavy vehicles. 


  • Carson Poe and Gina Filosa moderated national webinars on alternative fuel corridor designations for the Federal Highway Administration on May 12 and 16. During the webinars, participants could provide suggestions about the process and criteria that U.S. DOT should consider when designating strategic locations along national highways for electric vehicle charging and hydrogen, propane, and natural gas fueling.


  • Michael Dinning gave the keynote address on cyber resiliency in transportation and moderated a session on cyber security at the New England Intelligent Transportation Society (ITS) Annual Interchange in Boston, Massachusetts, on May 13. Terry Sheehan moderated a session on using ITS to build resilient transportation networks. Participants voiced interest in continuing to work together and improve cyber and system resiliency in New England, and Volpe is exploring ways to facilitate this collaboration.


  • Christopher Becker and Larry Yount delivered training on advanced steering system technologies at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in Washington, D.C., on May 9.


  • Dr. Alex Epstein presented Volpe’s research on truck side guards at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s truck underride roundtable in Ruckersville, Virginia, on May 5.


  • Dr. Charles McCarthy presented on international port and terminal operations best practices in support of the U.S.-Brazil Transportation Partnership Ports & Waterways Working Group in Sao Paulo and Brasilia, Brazil, April 30 to May 7.



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