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SUNlight-to-LIQUID: Integrated solar-thermochemical synthesis of liquid hydrocarbon fuels

Objective

Liquid hydrocarbon fuels are ideal energy carriers for the transportation sector due to their exceptionally high energy density and most convenient handling, without requiring changes in the existing global infrastructure. Currently, virtually all renewable hydrocarbon fuels originate from biomass. Their feasibility to meet the global fuel demand and their environmental impact are controversial. In contrast, SUN-to-LIQUID has the potential to cover future fuel consumption as it establishes a radically different non-biomass non-fossil path to synthesize renewable liquid hydrocarbon fuels from abundant feedstocks of H2O, CO2 and solar energy. Concentrated solar radiation drives a thermochemical redox cycle, which inherently operates at high temperatures and utilizes the full solar spectrum. Thereby, it provides a thermodynamically favourable path to solar fuel production with high energy conversion efficiency and, consequently, economic competitiveness. Recently, the first-ever production of solar jet fuel has been experimentally demonstrated at laboratory scale using a solar reactor containing a ceria-based reticulated porous structure undergoing the redox cyclic process.
SUN-to-LIQUID aims at advancing this solar fuel technology from the laboratory to the next field phase: expected key innovations include an advanced high-flux ultra-modular solar heliostat field, a 50 kW solar reactor, and optimized redox materials to produce synthesis gas that is subsequently processed to liquid hydrocarbon fuels. The complete integrated fuel production chain will be experimentally validated at a pre-commercial scale and with record high energy conversion efficiency.
The ambition of SUN-to-LIQUID is to advance solar fuels well beyond the state of the art and to guide the further scale-up towards a reliable basis for competitive industrial exploitation. Large-scale solar fuel production is expected to have a major impact on a sustainable future transportation sector.

Field of science

  • /engineering and technology/environmental engineering/energy and fuels/energy conversion
  • /natural sciences/earth and related environmental sciences/atmospheric sciences/meteorology/solar radiation
  • /natural sciences/chemical sciences/organic chemistry/hydrocarbons
  • /engineering and technology/environmental engineering/energy and fuels/renewable energy/solar energy
  • /natural sciences/chemical sciences/inorganic chemistry/inorganic compounds

Call for proposal

H2020-LCE-2015-1-two-stage
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

RIA - Research and Innovation action

Coordinator

BAUHAUS LUFTFAHRT EV
Address
Willy Messerschmitt Strasse 1
82024 Taufkirchen
Germany
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 1 014 060

Participants (7)

EIDGENOESSISCHE TECHNISCHE HOCHSCHULE ZUERICH
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 0
Address
Raemistrasse 101
8092 Zuerich
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
DEUTSCHES ZENTRUM FUR LUFT - UND RAUMFAHRT EV
Germany
EU contribution
€ 968 670,68
Address
Linder Hohe
51147 Koln
Activity type
Research Organisations
Fundacion IMDEA Energia
Spain
EU contribution
€ 955 921,53
Address
Avenida Ramon De La Sagra 3
28935 Mostoles Madrid
Activity type
Research Organisations
HYGEAR TECHNOLOGY AND SERVICES BV
Netherlands
EU contribution
€ 961 433
Address
Westervoortsedijk 73
6827 AV Arnhem
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
ABENGOA RESEARCH SL

Participation ended

Spain
EU contribution
€ 58 846,75
Address
Calle Energia Solar 1 - Campus Palmas Altas Sect Sunp Gu I Parcela Ze 3
41014 Sevilla
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
ARTTIC
France
EU contribution
€ 288 550
Address
Rue Du Dessous Des Berges 58A
75013 Paris
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
ABENGOA ENERGIA SA
Spain
EU contribution
€ 203 136,04
Address
Calle Energia Solar, 1, Campus Palmas Altas
41014 Sevilla
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)