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Removal and collection of chemicals

Most of the chemicals used at Stockholm Arlanda Airport are everyday products like paint, glue and detergents. But operating an airport also requires certain chemicals that are more unique.

One of these is aviation kerosene (aircraft fuel), which is the chemical handled in the largest quantity at the airport. In the winter, the airport also uses chemicals to keep aircraft and runways ice-free. Propylene glycol, mixed with hot water, is employed to de-ice aircraft. Potassium formiate is used as an anti-skid agent on runways.

Aircraft fuel

Every year Stockholm Arlanda Airport handles more than 600,000 cubic metres of aviation kerosene, or Jet A-1 as it is called. Sometimes there is an unpleasant smell at airports when aviation kerosene is being handled. This smell is due to the same sulphur compound that causes odour problems at pulp mills. Although this compound has an intensive smell, it is non-toxic in the concentrations found at Stockholm Arlanda.

Facts about aviation kerosene

The airport’s aircraft fuel depot is located adjacent to the airport and has a capacity of about 20 million litres of aviation fuel. From the depot, a pipeline system known as the hydrant pipeline runs beneath the airport. Along the hydrant pipeline are connecting valves in wells at most aircraft parking stands. This means that, as a rule, no tanker vehicles need to be in the vicinity of the aircraft.

The emissions during combustion of aviation kerosene are the same as with the combustion of other fossil fuels.

Facts on other fuels

Aside from aviation kerosene, the airport handles smaller quantities of Avgas 100-LL, an aviation fuel used mainly for small propeller planes.

Stockholm Arlanda also handles nearly 3,000 cubic metres per year of petrol, diesel fuel and heating oil for its ground vehicles and back-up power units.