Aviation fuel from CO2
Авиатопливо из CO2
Cement giant CEMEX, synthetic hydrocarbon producer Sasol ecoFT and energy company Enertrag Re are planning to launch joint production of sustainable aviation fuel, using green hydrogen and carbon dioxide.

The photo is sourced from cemex.com

Each company will get its own niche in the project. CEMEX will supply an average of 100 tons of CO2 daily, which will be captured at the cement production site in Rüdersdorf, Germany. Hydrogen production by electrolysis using the renewable energy resources will be handled by Enertrag having 772 wind turbines with the total capacity of 1,618 megawatts (MW). Sasol ecoFT will produce synthetic aviation fuel using the Fischer-Tropsch process, a chemical reaction converting carbon oxide and hydrogen into liquid hydrocarbons when a catalyst is added.

The process of converting CO2 into aviation fuel was described a year and half ago by scientists from the University of Oxford and the King Abdulaziz City of Science and Technology (a research centre in Saudi Arabia) in their article in the Nature Communications journal. The authors of the paper conducted an experiment using high-temperature synthesis: a mixture of hydrogen, carbon dioxide and citric acid with addition of a catalyst containing potassium and manganese was heated in a special reactor to 350 degrees Celsius. In CO2 molecules, at this temperature, carbon atoms began to separate from oxygen and combine with hydrogen atoms, thereby forming hydrocarbon molecules similar in structure to aviation kerosine. In parallel, other substances were formed in the reactor, including propylene and ethylene used in petrochemistry.

In July 2021, the European Commission published a plan, according to which by 2025 the share of biofuels in the flights between and from the EU countries should reach 2%, and by 2030 and 2035. – 5% and 20% respectively.

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