CARTIF Technology Centre will take part of BioSFerA project, an international initiative which will seek to produce biofuels for air and maritime use at the lowest cost. BioSFerA is funded by the Horizon 2020 research program of the European Union.

The ultimate goal of this project is to develop cost-effective interdisciplinary technology that enables the sourcing of sustainable fuels from Syngas FERmentation for both aircraft and maritime vessels. The process is as follows: biogenic waste is gasified, then the synthesis gas is fermented and bio-based triacylglycerides (TAG) are produced. At the end of the project, at least two barrels of hydrotreated TAG will be available as next generation marine and aviation biofuels.

Taking advantage of the synergies between biological and thermochemical technologies, BioSFerA will achieve a total carbon utilization of more than 35% and a minimum sale price <0.7-0.8 € / l. BioSFerA aims to evolve the proposed technology from TRL3 to TRL5. In the TRL3 phase, extensive laboratory-scale testing will be performed to optimize the process and increase the flexibility of the feedstock in terms of non-food bio-based mixtures. Then, based on laboratory testing, pilot scale runs (TRL5) will investigate the overall process.

Within the framework of the project, the compatibility of hydrocarbons with maritime and aviation standards for direct fuels will also be verified. Techno-economic, market, environmental, social, and health and safety risk assessments will be conducted in the overall BioSFerA process and, together with a process model, will allow for a realistic scale-up scenario. This will allow the development of a profitable and versatile value chain with favorable conditions for profitable investments in Europe.

The BioSFerA international consortium is made up of some public and research institutes: CERTH (Greece), VTT (Finland), CARTIF Technology Centre (Spain), Bio Base Europe-Pilot Plant VZW (Belgium), CSIC (Spain), Technical University National of Athens (Greece); and some private companies: Kuwait Petroleum Research and Technology B.V. (Netherlands), RINA Consulting S.P.A (Italy), Sumitomo SHI FW Energia Oy (Finland), GoodFuels (Netherlands), Environment Park S.P.A (Italy).

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