Keeping our heads in the clouds

When ExxonMobil (then Vacuum Oil) first went into the aviation business in Australia during World War I, only a privileged few got to peek above the clouds. Today an average of more than 400,000 passengers pass through Australian airports every day.

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Keeping our heads in the clouds

The last 20 years has seen unprecedented growth in air travel with more that 150 million passenger movements per year, up from about 70 million in 1997.

“The logistics of supplying fuel for this growing demand has been a key focus of our investment strategy for a number of years now,” said ExxonMobil Australia and New Zealand Airports and Terminals Manager Stephen Del Monaco.

“Right now we are constructing a jet-fuel pipeline link from our main fuel terminal at Yarraville to the Melbourne Airport supply pipeline running from the Altona Refinery to Somerton.

“Out at the airport we are working with our joint-venture partners in the Melbourne Joint User Hydrant Installation (JUHI), to upgrade the jet-fuel supply facilities.”

On November 20, the Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Sport and Veteran’s Affairs John Eren visited the airport to see a new truck unloading facility and other capacity enhancement projects.

Photo — Victorian Tourism Minister John Eren (pictured left) inspects the capacity enhancement projects at the Melbourne JUHI.

Joint Venture Manager John Waddick said the Melbourne JUHI consisted of a combination of storage and hydrant fuelling facilities, including a storage facility at Marker Road, next to the airport, about nine kilometres of underground hydrant pipelines and 200 pits to refuel aircraft.

Established in 1966 the JUHI joint venture involves the main supply companies – Mobil, BP, Caltex and Viva.

Photo — Industry stakeholders with Victorian Tourism Minister John Eren (pictured fourth from right) at the new truck unloading facility.

“At the truck unloading facility, we have completed modifications to the existing bays one and two, reducing unloading times, and we have added a new third unloading bay,” said John.

“At the tank farm we have improved the truck unloading hydraulics. 

“We have also de-bottlenecked the supply pipeline into the storage facility, which provides an additional 10 percent increased sprint capacity.

“As the airport’s fuel demand grows, we are continuing to invest to improve the supply infrastructure.”

Photo — Victorian Tourism Minister John Eren (pictured centre) with Abrar Chawdhury, ExxonMobil Melbourne Airport Manager and Stephen Delmonaco, ExxonMobil Terminals and Airports Manager - Australia and New Zealand.

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