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Lhyfe and SAF+ International Group sign MoU to produce e-SAF

Lhyfe and SAF+ International Group (SAF+), a leader in the production and marketing of e-SAF (electro Sustainable Aviation Fuel), wish to combine their expertise to develop the production of e-SAF using green hydrogen, at a production site located in the Le Havre area. This is the first announcement of its kind for Lhyfe.

SAF+ brings together technical expertise to provide sustainable fuel solutions (e-SAF) and help reduce the carbon footprint of the aviation industry, using available raw materials and renewable energies—such as the green hydrogen produced by Lhyfe—in accordance with international and European regulations (CORSIA and RefuelEU).

SAF+ brings together a coalition of leading international players from across the aviation value chain. In July 2023, the company announced the signature of a memorandum of understanding with the Air France-KLM Group for the supply of second-generation e-SAF fuel, with the first deliveries scheduled for 2030.

Lhyfe produces green and renewable hydrogen through the electrolysis of water, at production units powered by renewable energy. The company’s first site has already been operational since the second half of 2021, and two further sites in France were inaugurated in December 2023. Several other sites are currently under construction or extension across Europe.

As part of this memorandum of understanding, Lhyfe and SAF+ plan to assess the potential for developing e-SAF production in the Le Havre area and to sign a co-development agreement.

The partners are aiming for a facility in the port region of Le Havre, where Lhyfe would build a green hydrogen production site with a capacity of more than 100 tonnes per day (300 MW of installed electrolysis capacity) to supply an e-SAF production site that SAF+ is planning to build. This industrial complex would be connected to the hydrocarbon transport network in order to transport the e-SAF obtained from Le Havre to airports in the Paris region, as well as in northern and eastern France via the existing infrastructure.

The two partners are aiming for a market launch by 2030, to align with market expectations and the zero-emission targets set for 2050.



Getting a plant running at scale should enable a much bettter assessment of costs of e-SAF.

My present understanding is that even that has only a partial impact on GHG from jets, but I have not looked into it in any detail, and would hope to do so over the next couple of days,

If anyone has info and links to hand, that would be great!


According to a post a few years ago here on GCC, an ANL study projected that eFTD fuels (which includes jet fuel) could be carbon negative if the process is appropriately configured.


Thanks Carl.

Trying to get my head around your link, I note that at the very edge of the possible they show a reduction in GHG of 108%, which presumably means very slightly carbon negative.
They also say:

' When integrating the FT fuel production process with corn ethanol production, the WTW GHG emissions of FT fuels are 57–65% lower compared to petroleum counterparts.;

Which as far as I can work out is telling us that the process they favour, or perhaps a more readily realisable on, would cut GHG by around half or a bit better.


I googled:

' why is saf blended with jet fuel limited to 50%?'

And one of the hits says:
' Why does a blend limit exist? At present, SAF must be blended with conventional jet fuel (up to 50%). Some less environmentally favourable components of conventional jet fuel (e.g. sulphur) allow seals to swell in engines and prevent fuel leaks'

(Aviation, Benefits beyond borders)

I then googled:

' can aircraft engines be redesigned to run on 100% Saf?'

And came up with:

' All in-production Rolls-Royce engines for long-haul and business jets are compatible with 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), ...'

Whilst Boeing:

' And US manufacturer Boeing said its commercial airplanes will be capable and certified to fly on 100pc SAF by 2030'

I'm not really clear what they arfe talking about, whether they are talking about retrofitting or upgrading current engines, or they are referring only to new aircraft.

If that is the case, 2030 seems to be remarkably unambitious.


I was trying to find out what else you need apart from hydrogen for 100% SAF

The nearest I came was this:

This is the DOE, but refers to blends at up to 50% SAF.

It would appear that biological sources are the thing.

I have no idea how rampable they are, although there are no present plans it would seem to do anything with any significant impact on ever growing emissions for the foreseeable future.

I know little about biological sources, or whether with hydrogen there are other alternatives.

AFAIK DAC is a nonsense, which since we are trying to limit direct emissions of CO2 from power plants etc, would, if true, make pretty much of a nonsense of longer range plans for SAF production.

It would appear however that planes will be, or at least can be, built capable of running on 100% SAF, so maybe we are not simply turning out umpteen new planes which have no conceivable chance for their decades of use of doing anything but emitting vast amounts of GHG.


I am hoping that one of the folk here with aeronautical/aircraft engineering expertise will comment on whether it is likely to be possible and practicable to convert an engine designed to run on up to 50%SAF to run on 100% SAF, as it is the sort of question well beyond something which google is going to help on.


You can run a new jet engine on 100% but not an engine that has previously run fossil jet fuel the aromatics swell the seals and you need to keep putting some in otherwise they shrink and you get leaks.


Cheers SJC,

I am wondering if folk like you can shed any light on using biofuels for SAF?

As far as I can work out is it a resource grabber, of both land and water, when bioproducts if salted and buried can actually reduce GHG levels, and they also can't be ramped at anything like the rates needed to cope with the projected increase in long distance flights.

But OTOH I know even less about biological routes to SAF than I do on so many other subjects, and I don't kid myself that I am in any position to get any sort of decent handle on it, so evaluations from folk better placed than I would be very welcome and interesting.



I was wondering how much long haul fleet expansion with very inadequate carbon reduction available will build in obsolescence for decades, as that is the life of a plane.

Following on from your remarks about one you have used not SAF fuel, the engine is basically screwed for SAF, I wondered how long engines last.

' The most important concept in engine life is the Time Between Overhaul(TBO), which is basically the manufacturer recommended time period after which the engine is stripped down,checked thoroughly and required parts replaced. After overhaul, the engine is usually cleared till the next TBO.

An overhauled engine is theoretically as good as a new one and comes with the same life (TBO) and warranty, if applicable. Airline engines (for example the Rolls Royce Trent series) usually have TBOs of over 15000 hours. The record for maximum time for an engine on wing (i.e. use in aircraft before removal for overhaul) is well over 40,000 hours.'

So how many years is that, on average?

' The Top 20 Part 135 charter operators by blight hours averaged 448 hours of flying per aircraft compared to the 3,000 to 4,000 hours per year commercial airliners fly, based on the 2016 hours flown and fleet size as reported by ARGUS. '

So for the long haul jets we are interested in as being the major source of GHG, they will strip out and refurbish/replace the engines in around 4 years or so.

If I have not dropped any spanners, then it looks as though at least as far as the engines are concerned we are not building in an excessive degree of obsolescence from the get-go.

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