The UK’s largest bank, HSBC, is joining Virgin Atlantic and LanzaTech in supporting the preparation for a world-first flight using a low-carbon, synthetic jet fuel kerosene produced from industrial waste gases. LanzaTech is leading the development of the process that captures waste gases from industrial steel production and ferments them to ethanol, which is then chemically converted for use as jet fuel. (Earlier post.)
LanzaTech and Virgin Atlantic have been working together for three years on the fuel’s development, but the addition of HSBC’s support to the partnership, along with Boeing and other technical partners, means a proving flight of the new technology will take place within the next year.
LanzaTech said that the support of HSBC will allow production of this innovative new fuel to move from sample size to demo scale and will produce a sufficient amount of fuel to conduct the proving flight. These are all essential steps in the process to achieve American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) certification of the alcohol to jet production pathway.
ASTM certification is a significant step towards commercialization of LanzaTech’s sustainable fuel solution, which is expected to have half the carbon footprint of petroleum jet.
LanzaTech estimates that its process can apply to 65% of the world’s steel mills, allowing the fuel to be scaled up for worldwide use.