The EcoFuel project brings together chemists, physicists, engineers as well as dissemination and exploitation experts from four universities/research institutions, two SMEs and three industrial companies. All partners innovatively join their key technologies to develop and exploit a novel process chain, based on the power of electrochemistry to deliver truly green (CO2 neutral) fuels with an unprecedented overall energy efficiency.
The collaborative project EcoFuel aims to develop next generation renewable fuel technologies from CO2 and renewable energy, thus helping to build a sustainable and climate-friendly future.
Objectives and project plan
EcoFuel develops and demonstrates a novel process chain that significantly improves the energy efficiency of the production of synthetic liquid fuels from CO2, water and renewable electric energy.
The process chain comprises
a) the supply of CO2 from the atmosphere via a novel direct air capture approach,
b) direct electro-catalytic reduction of CO2 to C2/C3 alkenes under mild reaction conditions, and
c) thermo-catalytic liquefaction of the generated C2/C3 alkenes, upgrading and fractionation into transport fuels.
The direct electro-catalytic CO2 reduction to hydrocarbons offers greatly enhanced efficiency potentials compared to classic power-to-X technologies depending on hydrogen generation through water electrolysis; at the same time, the number of process steps is reduced. The EcoFuel process performance will be validated by in-depth impact assessment.
During the project’s duration of 36 months, various new materials and components for the EcoFuel technology will be tested and developed. The strong involvement of industrial partners in the EcoFuel consortium enables technology developments up to TRL 4, thus providing a robust technical basis in support of a sustainable transition towards a renewable European energy system.