The Horizon 2020 project ECO2Fuel (GA # 101037389) aims to develop the world’s first electrochemical 1 MW low-temperature system to directly convert CO2 into sustainable liquid E-fuels (C1-C4 alcohols) and test it under industrial conditions (TRL7) in Niederaussem.
This is achieved through the direct electrocatalytic reduction of CO2 with water and renewable electricity without hydrogen, at temperatures and pressures below 80°C and 15 bar. Thanks to its compatibility with dynamic loads, the aim of the ECO2Fuel system is to be directly linked to renewable electricity generation.
This project continues the activities of the Horizon 2020 project LOTER.CO2M (5 kW, operating in Niederaussem from the end of 2021).
In addition, a process developed by RWE to operate a power station with the use of synthetic fuels is being put in place with the appropriate system technology for the first time. The exhaust gas from an electricity generator running on CCU fuel is fed back into the power station process using CO2 scrubbing. This makes it possible to improve the overall efficiency rating of the process chain and also use the carbon component of the CCU fuel many times over (i.e. carbon recycling). This means that peak load electricity can be generated with very low emissions.
The project began in October 2021 and will have a term of five years.
The project coordinator is DLR, with 15 project partners from seven countries (BE, DE, EL, ES, IL, IT, NL), representing entities such as the FIAT Research Centre, Bekaert, Industrie de Nora, Hygear, Monolithos Recycling Technologies, PO Cell Tech, Meta Group and Think11.
The project has an overall budget of about €20.1 million.