European Projects

Take-Off: Production of synthetic renewable aviation fuel from CO2 and H2

TAKE-OFF is an industrially driven project that will be a game-changer in the cost effecTAKE-OFF is an industrially driven project that will be a game-changer in the cost effective production of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) from CO2 and hydrogen. Due to their strict criteria in terms of physical and chemical properties, the aviation sector is highly limited in the number of options for meeting sustainability goals.

The unique TAKE-OFF technology is based on conversion of CO2 and H2 to SAF via ethylene as intermediate. The industrial partners SkyNRG (SAF developer) and FEV (power systems) will team up with ground-breaking research groups at CNRS (catalyst development), TNO (reactor and process design), and RWTH (engine out emissions reduction) to deliver a highly innovative process which produces SAF at lower costs, higher energy efficiency and higher carbon efficiency to the crude jet fuel product than the current benchmark Fischer-Tropsch process. The project will further leverage the investments in the ALIGN-CCUS (ERA-NET ACT) project with the involvement of key industrial players in the development of synthetic sustainable fuels. TAKE-OFF’s key industrial players are RWE (power producer), MHPSE (energy technology provider), and AKEU (electrolysis systems), allowing the demonstration of the full technology chain, utilizing industrial captured CO2 and electrolytically produced hydrogen. The demonstration activities will provide valuable data to the University of Southern Denmark for comprehensive technical and economic and environmental analyses with an outlook on Chemical Factories of the Future. The consortium is further supplemented by the leading industry association, CO2 Value Europe, for communication and exploitation.

The achievement of the project objectives will contribute directly to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, European Green Deal, and the Renewable Energy Directive II, where sustainable aviation fuels are receiving increased attention.

CONDOR: COmbined suN-Driven Oxidation and CO2 Reduction for renewable energy storage

Conversion of sunlight into fuels and mitigation of anthropogenic climate change are big scientific challenges. CONDOR addresses both of them by developing highly efficient solar-driven conversion of CO2 into fuels and added-value chemicals. We propose a photosynthetic device made of two compartments (a) a photoelectrochemical cell that splits water and CO2 and generates oxygen and syngas, a mixture of H2 and CO; (b) a (photo)reactor that converts syngas into methanol and dimethylether (DME), via bi-functional heterogeneous catalysts. The proposed modular approach enables different configurations depending on the target product. The oxidation process is not limited to O2 production, but entails chlorine and small organic molecules, such as 2,5-furandicarboxylic acid, derived from the oxidation of low-cost and easily available precursors like salt water or alcohol derived biomass, respectively. Employed materials will be obtained through low energy/low temperature routes, mainly based on wet chemical procedures, such as sol-gel chemistry, mild hydrothermal processes, electrochemical processes at ambient temperature. Raw materials/precursors will not be limited by availability on a global scale, making use of organic species, silicon, earth abundant metal oxides, first row transition metals. The final target is a full photosynthetic device with 8% solar-to-syngas and 6% solar-to-DME efficiencies with three-months continuous outdoor operation. This represents a large progress with respect to the state of the art and requires an international collaboration and a multidisciplinary approach, which integrates expertise in nanomaterials preparation and characterisation by operando microscopy and spectroscopy, homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis, photochemistry/photoelectrochemistry, PEC engineering and assessment of the environmental and socio-economic impact of the proposed technology, including life cycle assessment. 

GICO: Gasification Integrated with CO2 capture and conversion

In order to overcome the main barriers that prevent renewable energy technologies from forming the backbone of the energy system, GICO develops new materials (CO2 capture sorbents; high temperature inorganic removal sorbents; catalytic filter candles; membranes for oxygen separation and methanol production) and technologies (Hydro Thermal Carbonisation; Sorption Enhanced Gasification; Hot Gas Conditioning; Carbon Capture, Storage and Use; Power To Gas via Plasma conversion) to:

    • produce intermediate solid (5 vs 15 €/MWh) and gaseous (10 vs 30 €/MWh with zero particulate and ppb contaminants level) bioenergy carriers;
    • capture CO2 (40 €/t vs 90 €/t) receiving waste high alkali content and producing bricks;
    • convert CO2 to CO and O2 (90 vs 10% efficiency) storing renewable electricity excess;
    • produce methanol (35 vs 75 €/MWh) and electricity (100 vs 200 €/MWh).

GICO encompasses technology development (materials, processes, simulations, integrated system besides full-scale design) and assessment (techno-economical, environmental, social impacts and market) and dissemination activities. GICO activities are fully innovative and constitute a breakthrough (in materials and processes development and integration) involving methodological, technological and exploitation developments achieved previously by partners´ research over many years. The GICO activities aim at developing small to medium scale residual biomass plants (i.e. 2-20 t/day and 500-5,000 kWe, compatible with the standard residual biomass availability of few thousand tons per year) will change the actual social acceptance of the energy plants. They will no longer be seen as distant large consumers of resources and emitters of pollutants but as local small/medium plants connected to communities (for waste, materials and energy with negative/zero emissions) within the circular business model (industrial symbiosis with jointly located industries) that GICO promotes.


SELECTCO2 - Selective Electrochemical Reduction of CO2 to High Value Chemicals

SELECTCO2 aims to contribute to the electrification of the chemicals industry through the development of highly selective and efficient devices for the conversion of CO2 to high value products at low temperatures and pressures. It is well known in the chemicals industry that costs due to separations can amount to 60-80% of the total costs of the chemicals. This same general cost percentage holds in bio-based chemicals as well Electrochemical CO2 Reduction (ECO2R) allows the unique ability to start with a single reactant in CO2 and use catalysis to build up selectively to a given molecule. Direct conversion to a specific product allows for the mitigation or even elimination of separation costs and can greatly reduce the costs of producing a given chemical.

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