Proud of our past, Confident of our future.

History Remembered

The National Petroleum Management Association (NPMA)

NPMA and the SPR — What Is It?

Throughout our NPMA publications and documents, you will always see our SPR logo.  When NPMA was formed, we selected the aircraft fueling adapter, or SPR, as our primary symbol.  We did that as the adapter is universal and it represents the final delivery point at the end of the aviation fueling support chain ranging from the wellhead to wingtip.  It is the ideal image to represent the international aviation fueling community and the NPMA.

To recap a bit of history, the term SPR, or Single Point Receptacle, was coined by the US Air Force in the late 1940s as they were developing the first big jet aircraft and shortly thereafter followed in the commercial aviation world.  These aircraft required large fuel loads and demanded a fast, efficient fueling method.  Closed circuit, pressure fueling systems were developed to handle these requirements, the forerunners of today’s hydrant systems.  Basic system flow rates and pressures were ultimately standardized.  

The adapter was designed to a US military specification and has remained virtually unchanged over these past fifty years.  It was subsequently adopted by the International Standards Organization (ISO) and is the standard for commercial and military aviation for every country in the world.  While the commercial flightlines around the world generally refer to the “aircraft fueling adapter”, the military still clings to the traditional term “SPR”.  

In our logo, we adopted the SPR and personalized the letters to reflect three key standards, which are absolute bedrocks in the aviation fueling community.

Safety… Professionalism… Reliability

We are proud of these words and how indelibly they are etched in our everyday business and in our people.  Aviation fuel handlers routinely perform to these standards in directly supporting an amazing worldwide transportation system and unparalleled military aerospace power.

In the early years of NPMA, when it consisted only of a steering group, a program was initiated to recognize senior individuals who have made notable contributions to aviation fueling.  Following this small beginning with three charter members,  Over 100 people from around the globe have since been honored with initiation into the “Order of the SPR”.  The members of the Order are a veritable “Who’s Who” of those who have significantly touched and influenced the aviation fueling community.  They range from captains of industry, executives, managers, and supervisors to those with their hands on the nozzles and the wrenches.  

Each year the NPMA Selection Committee announces a small number of new inductees generally at the NPMA PETRO Conference.  The plaque commemorating selection into the Order is the same SPR adapter that is fitted to the aircraft. 

So, SPR is firmly entrenched in the foundation and image of NPMA.  It is our term and it is our heritage.  As we say on our logo, “Proud of our Past — Confident of our Future”.