Jet Fuel from Renewable Sources Gains Efficiency through Multi-Sector Collaboration

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Energy dot gov Office of Energy Efficiency and renewable energy

Bioenergy Technologies Office


August 19, 2021

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Jet Fuel from Renewable Sources Gains Efficiency through Multi-Sector Collaboration

PNNL Researcher

Robert Dagle holds a vial of fuel created from biomass conversion. Photo courtesy of Andrea Starr, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

A patented process for converting alcohol sourced from renewable or industrial waste gases into jet or diesel fuel is being scaled up at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) through a partnership with Oregon State University and the carbon-recycling experts at LanzaTech. This work is part of the Chemical Catalysis for Bioenergy (ChemCatBio) Consortium, which is supported by DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Bioenergy Technologies Office and leverages unique capabilities at each of the partnering national laboratories.

A single-step chemical conversion streamlines what is currently a multi-step process. The new PNNL-patented catalyst converts biofuel (ethanol) directly into a versatile “platform” chemical called n-butene. A microchannel reactor design further reduces costs while delivering a scalable modular processing system.

The new process would provide a more efficient route for converting renewable and waste-derived ethanol to useful chemicals. The new technology reduces emissions of carbon dioxide by using renewable or recycled carbon feedstocks.

Read more about the multi-sector collaboration from PNNL.

This national lab feature is part of a series on sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and the work funded and supported by the U.S. Department of Energy Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) to advance SAF research, development, and deployment. Visit the SAF page on the BETO website to learn more.