Porsche, Siemens Energy and partners advance climate-neutral eFuels development; Haru Oni pilot in Chile
Porsche, Siemens Energy and partners are developing and implementing a pilot project—the “Haru Oni” project—in Chile that is expected to yield the world’s first integrated, commercial, industrial-scale plant for making synthetic climate-neutral fuels (eFuels).
Electrolyzers will use wind power to produce green hydrogen. In a second step, plans call for filtering CO2 out of the air and then combining it with the green hydrogen to form synthetic methanol. The result is renewable methanol, which can be converted into climate-friendly fuel using an MTG (Methanol To Gasoline) technology to be licensed and supported by ExxonMobil.
In the pilot phase, e-Methanol production will initially reach around 750,000 liters per year by 2022. Part of the e-Methanol will be converted to e-Gasoline (130,000 liters per year). In two further phases, capacity is then to be increased to about 55 million liters (14.5 million gallons US) of e-Gasoline a year by 2024, and around 550 million liters (145 million gallons US) by 2026.
Porsche will be the primary customer for the green fuel. Other partners in the project are the Chilean power company AME, Chile’s national oil company ENAP, and Italian energy company Enel.
The Haru Oni pilot project in Magallanes Province takes advantage of the excellent wind conditions in southern Chile to produce climate-neutral fuel with the aid of green wind power. As part of Germany’s national hydrogen strategy, to support the project Siemens Energy will get a grant of some €8 million from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.
Establishing a sustainable energy economy is going to require some rethinking. Renewable energy will no longer be produced only where it’s needed, but where natural resources like wind and sun are available on a massive scale. So new supply chains are going to arise all over the world to carry renewable energy from one region to another. That’s especially important for Germany, which—bottom-line—has to import energy if it’s going to meet its nationwide demand. Hydrogen will come to play an increasingly important role in storing and transporting energy. Which is why the German government’s support for the project is an important signal.—Christian Bruch, CEO Siemens Energy
Electromobility is a top priority at Porsche. eFuels for cars are a worthwhile complement to that—if they’re produced in parts of the world where a surplus of sustainable energy is available. They are an additional element on the road to decarbonization. Their advantages lie in their ease of application: eFuels can be used in combustion engines and plug-in hybrids, and can make use of the existing network of filling stations. By using them, we can make a further contribution toward protecting the climate. As a maker of high-performance, efficient engines, we have broad technical expertise. We know exactly what fuel characteristics our engines need in order to operate with minimal impact on the climate. Our involvement in the world’s first commercial, integrated eFuels plant supports the development of the alternative fuels of the future.—Porsche CEO Oliver Blume
Siemens Energy is a co-developer of the “Haru Oni” project— also known as the HIF (Highly Innovative Fuels) project)—and is serving as a systems integrator to cover the entire value chain—from power generation using Siemens Gamesa wind turbines, to producing green hydrogen, to conversion into synthetic fuel. The company’s flexible PEM (PEM = Proton Exchange Membrane) electrolysis is ideally suited for using volatile wind power.
As the fuel’s primary user, Porsche is planning as a first phase to use the eFuels from Chile in beacon projects. Those include using the eFuels in vehicles for Porsche motorsports, at the Porsche Experience Centers and perspectively also in serial production sports cars. The sports car maker will start with an initial investment of roughly €20 million.
AME is the primary developer and owner of the HIF (Highly Innovative Fuels) project company. Enel is a co-funder of the plant, with a focus on wind power and electrolysis. ENAP will support the project by providing operating staff and with maintenance and logistics.
Chile, with its excellent climate conditions for wind power and the associated low cost of electricity, has a very high potential in international terms for producing, exporting and locally using green hydrogen.