Honeywell and GranBio Partner on Carbon-Neutral SAF
Honeywell International Inc.
Honeywell and GranBio Technologies have unveiled their groundbreaking collaboration aimed at integrating Honeywell's ethanol to jet (ETJ) technology with GranBio's cellulosic ethanol AVAP® technology.
This strategic partnership is set to yield carbon-neutral, sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) sourced from biomass residues at GranBio's soon-to-be-established U.S. demonstration plant.
GranBio's AVAP process, protected by patents, is designed to transform a wide spectrum of biomass, including forest and agricultural residues, into economically advantageous, low-carbon-intensity sugars, lignin, and nanocellulose. These cellulosic sugars will be converted into SAF, using Honeywell's ETJ technology, as well as biochemicals through a separate process.
By harnessing forest biomass-derived ethanol from the AVAP process, Honeywell's ETJ-powered jet fuel has the potential to render greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions net zero over the entirety of its lifecycle, thus outperforming petroleum-based jet fuel.
GranBio's CEO, Bernardo Gradin, expressed his enthusiasm about this venture, stating, "Combining our biorefinery expertise with Honeywell's extensive experience in developing and scaling fuel technologies will not only help us meet our SAF supply objectives but also aligns with GranBio's mission to provide comprehensive, net-zero SAF solutions sourced from biomass across the globe. The AVAP technology, depending on the feedstock and plant setup, holds promise for carbon-negative SAF, as per current lifecycle analysis."
Furthermore, Gradin highlighted the vast potential of repurposing idle pulp and paper facilities in the United States. This approach has the potential to breathe new life into forestry value chains, bolster rural manufacturing, and offer significant societal, environmental, and economic benefits.
Barry Glickman, the Vice President and General Manager of Honeywell Sustainable Technology Solutions, emphasised the partnership's potential to decarbonise air travel.
He added, "Our advanced ETJ process is ready for immediate implementation and draws upon Honeywell's nearly two-decade history in renewable fuels. Honeywell's renewable fuel solutions, including ETJ, incorporate integrated, modular designs that enable partners like GranBio to establish new SAF production capacities more rapidly than traditional construction methods would allow."
GranBio's AVAP initiative aspires to facilitate global net-zero SAF production by capitalising on abundant, cost-effective biomass feedstocks and diversifying revenue streams through value-added products, extending beyond SAF. This approach confers a substantial cost advantage compared to other SAF producers.
In a significant milestone, GranBio's subsidiary, AVAPCO, was awarded an $80 million grant by the U.S. Department of Energy to support the demonstration plant's construction, expected to produce approximately 2 million gallons of SAF annually upon its launch in 2026.
Honeywell has expanded its offerings to meet the surging demand for renewable fuels, including SAF, by presenting solutions across a spectrum of feedstocks. This comprehensive renewable fuels portfolio encompasses Honeywell UOP Ecofining™, ethanol to jet technology, and the recently introduced Honeywell UOP eFining™, which converts green hydrogen and carbon dioxide into eFuels.
Furthermore, Honeywell has made a resolute commitment to achieving carbon neutrality in its operations and facilities by 2035, building on its track record of substantially reducing greenhouse gas intensity within its operations and facilities.
Additionally, Honeywell has dedicated a substantial portion of its 2022 research and development investments toward environmentally and socially responsible outcomes, with approximately 60% of these funds directed towards ESG-oriented solutions for customers.
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