The Worshipful Company of Fuellers, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and the Royal Aeronautical Society

John Pitts, our MD, had a diverse and interesting week after Easter.

He was formally admitted as a Freeman into the Worshipful Company of Fuellers at a ceremony held at Mercers’ Hall in the City of London on Wednesday. The history of The Fuellers Company can be traced back to the Livery Company of Woodmongers and Coal Sellers in 1376; its Royal Charter was granted by King James 1 in 1605. Now the Fuellers represent all aspects of the Energy Industries.

John then travelled to Yeovil, in Dorset on Thursday to give a talk jointly to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and the Royal Aeronautical Society,  which was held at Leonardo Helicopters. An impressive factory site, it celebrates its 100th Anniversary this year. The site (which was formerly Westland Helicopters) can claim to have produced an aircraft for every one of those years without a break – probably a unique achievement globally.

The event was well-attended in the Dallas Conference Room and not unsurprisingly the talk was on Aviation Fuel, an often overlooked part of flight, and one which most of us take for granted when flying around the world in spite of its obvious importance.

John managed to condense an overview of this complex and fascinating subject into a 1 ½ hour lecture whilst still managing to cover topics as diverse as the specification of Jet A-1, the commercial implications for airlines of Open Access fuel supply implementation, some of the basic principles of hydrant design and how fuel farms operate.

He ended the evening with a look to the future and the role which sustainable / synthetic jet fuel will increasingly play in the industry, as well as mentioning the challenges faced by electric-powered flight. The audience asked thoughtful questions during the Q & A session – ranging from the security of supply chains both here in the UK and globally, to who carries the cost of maintaining and operating the fuel facilities at airports.

John was most encouraged by the lecture’s positive reception and he hopes to deliver more talks at similar forums and academic establishments in the future.

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