NEW DELHI: In its effort to go green, SpiceJet on Monday operated India’s first TaxiBot at Terminal 2, Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi. SpiceJet flight SG 8171, a Boeing 737 scheduled to fly on the Delhi-Goa route, was towed by the TaxiBot from the jet bridge to the runway before it departed from Terminal 2, Delhi at 12 noon.
The flight was flagged off by R N Choubey, Civil Aviation Secretary, and Ajay Singh, Chairman and Managing Director, SpiceJet.The TaxiBot is a pilot-controlled semi-robotic towing tractor. Connected to the aircraft, the vehicle tows it from the jet bridge to the runway, close to the take-off point.
The TaxiBot’s operations are unique as it lifts and holds the aircraft’s nose wheel, enabling the pilot to transport the aircraft to the runway without using the plane’s engines. This, therefore, results in saving up to 85 per cent of fuel consumed during taxiing, besides substantial reduction of noise levels.
Recently, SpiceJet conducted the country’s first-ever BioJet fuel-powered flight, which was operated on the Dehradun-Delhi route in August. BioJet fuel has the potential of reducing carbon footprint by 15 per cent.
Other green initiatives of the airline include plantation drives, solar power projects, distribution of seed cards, and installing rooftop solar panels in Majuli to provide the village clean power.