Honeywell and Wood announced a comprehensive package of technologies to support the effort to produce carbon-neutral aviation fuel. When used together, the technologies—based on Honeywell’s UOP Ecofining process technology and Wood’s hydrogen plant technology—could reduce lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by 100% using certain feedstocks when compared to traditional petroleum aviation fuel.
The UOP Ecofining process technology converts waste oils, fats, and greases into Honeywell Green Jet Fuel, a drop-in replacement for jet fuel. When using a feedstock such as used cooking oils, lifecycle GHG emissions can be reduced by 80% at this stage compared to conventional petroleum jet fuel.
As the next step in enhancing the Ecofining process technology offering, Wood's technology will be integrated to use the byproducts of the UOP Ecofining process technology to produce renewable hydrogen, reducing lifecycle GHG emissions a further 10% when compared to the total GHG emissions produced by conventional petroleum jet fuel.
The renewable hydrogen is then injected back into the Honeywell Ecofining process to remove feed impurities and create a cleaner burning renewable fuel.
The carbon dioxide (CO2) that is generated from the production of the hydrogen can be captured and routed for permanent underground sequestration using the Honeywell H2 Solutions technology suite, further reducing lifecycle GHG emissions an additional 10% when compared to the total GHG emissions produced by conventional petroleum jet fuel. The combination of technologies results in an aviation fuel that is effectively carbon-neutral compared to petroleum fuels.
The combination of these technologies from Honeywell and Wood greatly reduces fossil carbon dioxide emissions compared to traditional fuels by using byproducts to provide hydrogen for the Ecofining process. As a result, a renewable fuels refinery can be essentially self-sustaining in hydrogen production while reducing the carbon intensity of the renewable fuels to very low levels.—Ben Owens, vice president and general manager of Honeywell Sustainable Technology Solutions
Recently, the US Departments of Energy (DOE), Transportation (DOT), Agriculture (USDA), and other federal government agencies worked together to introduce the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Grand Challenge with a goal to produce 3 billion gallons per year of sustainable aviation fuel by 2030 in the US. (Earlier post.)
If those 3 billion gallons of SAF were produced using Honeywell's comprehensive package of technologies, it could result in the equivalent of 34 million metric tons of cumulative carbon dioxide avoided per year, depending on the oil and fat feedstock mix used.
The UOP Ecofining process has been used for commercial production of sustainable aviation fuel since 2016 by World Energy in California. The facility remains the only 100% renewable jet fuel unit in the world. The Ecofining technology is used in most 100%-biofeed units producing renewable diesel and all the licensed renewable jet fuel production in the world today. Honeywell UOP currently has licensed 22 Ecofining units in nine countries around the world, processing 12 different types of renewable feedstocks.
Wood is a FTSE 250 company and a pioneer in hydrogen production technology with an experience list of more than 120 hydrogen and synthesis gas plants worldwide with a total installed capacity of more than 3.5 million Nm3/h of hydrogen. Wood has a wide experience base, with feedstocks ranging from natural gas to naphtha, and plant capacities ranging in size from 3,000 to more than 200,000 Nm3/h.
Wood’s Terrace Wall reforming furnace is characterized by a firing arrangement and sloped-wall radiant section design that together enable long catalyst tube life (often in excess of 100,000 hours) and deliver the flexibility to extend a reformer’s operating envelope. This often allows production of hydrogen in excess of the unit’s design capacity, which may in turn deliver additional economic benefits.
The reforming units can operate with ultra-low-NOx burners to meet tightening environmental emission standards worldwide.