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US firms look to produce SAF with solar energy

  • : Biofuels, Oil products
  • 22/08/09

US renewable energy firm Heliogen and solar energy firm Dimensional Energy will work together on a demonstration project that can produce sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), using solar energy to produce green hydrogen.

The firms have signed a letter of intent to produce SAF at Heliogen's solar thermal demonstration facility in California, where solar energy will be converted into thermal energy that will then produce green hydrogen, that will then be used to produce SAF. The initial aim is to produce 1 b/d ready to be blended with jet fuel. The firms expect this will be the first step towards developing a pipeline SAF supply of around 3mn bl in over 10 years.

And airline demand is already there. United Airlines has previously said it has invested with Dimensional Energy to produce and purchase SAF, trying to meet its pledge of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. United Airlines plans to buy 300mn USG of SAF from Dimensional over 20 years under an investment and commercial agreement. Dimensional Energy also plans to use the Fischer-Tropsch process to convert carbon dioxide and water to produce the building blocks for SAF feedstock. It began construction on a carbon dioxide-to-fuels plant in Tucson, Arizona, in 2021, with operations expected to begin in July.

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