eFuels - What and Why Insight - Porsche are trail blazing
As we progress towards zero CO2 emissions by 2050 we need to be rapidly searching for, and investing in, new non-fossil fuels.
One such fuel is electricity-based fuel or eFuel. It's a clever solution, as it's nearly carbon neutral when produced, carbon neutral when burned and can easily be stored and transported.
So how is this wonder fuel made? Put simply, CO2 is pulled from the air and converted into a liquid energy carrier which is essential for transportation and delivery. Then using renewable energy from a source such as wind turbines and an electrolysis process, hydrogen is extracted from water, such as desalinated seawater.
In a process called Fischer-Tropsch synthesis, the hydrogen is combined with the CO2 that was extracted from the air and converted into a liquid energy carrier: eFuel. Under high pressure using a catalyst, the hydrogen binds with the CO2.
Basically it means electricity is converted into a synthetic liquid that is easy to store and simple to transport, with multiple applications.
One company is blazing an eFuels trail, and that company is Porsche AG.
In collaboration with HIF Global, Siemens Energy, ExxonMobil and other international partners, they built the ‘Haru Oni’ pilot plant in Punta Arenas, Chile. It produces 130,000 litres of eFuel each year and Porsche buys it all for their motorsports.
The highest energy densities in the form of sun and wind are found in desert regions like southern Chile. But the energy that exists there has to be transported to where it can be used. The production of eFuels makes that possible. They take advantage of the outstanding local conditions to exploit wind energy to produce eFuels. Chile has also set itself some ambitious targets as part of its National Green Hydrogen Strategy. One of its goals is to produce the world’s cheapest hydrogen and develop the country into a leading exporter of green hydrogen and its derivatives.
Karl Dums, Team Lead for Sustainability says: "With the definition of our sustainability objectives in the Porsche Strategy 2030, we laid out our approach: in the development of future vehicles, we will focus on e-mobility. However, we will only meet our ambitious decarbonisation goals if we factor currently existing vehicles into the decarbonisation effort as well and operate them as close to net carbon neutral as possible. Worldwide, there are roughly 1.3 billion vehicles with combustion engines and our vehicles in particular are known for their longevity."
We say - It' cool to be be able to continue driving a car like a Porsche and know it's not emitting any nasties from it's engine and allows for the car to have a long life and not be scrapped, which also saves resources by mitigating the need to buy a new car.
(Header Image and Chart © eFuel Alliance e.V., Porsche Logo © Porsche AG )
©Ateliers Verts Ltd. 2023
Back to: Ateliers Verts® The Magazine