16 Apr 08. The partners of an Airbus-led project called CRISTAL ITP (In-trail Procedure) successfully carried out the world’s first in-flight demonstration of a flexible new procedure for oceanic airspace that saves fuel and reduces emissions during cruise. The new in-trail procedure will enable aircraft to more easily perform altitude changes during cruise which can significantly improve flight efficiency, reducing fuel burn and emissions. When an aircraft is not at its optimal altitude, aircraft fuel consumption and emissions are increased. As fuel is burned, the aircraft weight is reduced, and the aircraft then needs to climb to maintain its optimum cruise efficiency. Additionally, favourable winds can be found at higher or lower altitudes. The demonstration flight took place in late March using Airbus’ own A340 test aircraft and an SAS A330, performing the trial in Icelandic airspace. Iceland is a unique location where oceanic operations are carried out within radar coverage thus ensuring the complete safety of the trial.