RAF tests green fuel made of ‘air and water’ to power the planes of tomorrow
Success in first flight running on synthetic fuel, created with renewable energy and which could save up to 90pc of carbon per journey
UL91 is made by Zero Petroleum and manufactured by extracting hydrogen from water and carbon from atmospheric carbon dioxide. Using energy generated from renewable sources such as wind or solar, these are combined to create the synthetic fuel.
Electrolyse the water, you’ve green H2. From which you can build whatever complex hydrocarbons you want.
Yes, might well be expensive at present. But get solar power cheap enough – and this is an area where intermittency isn’t a problem, nor Hz on the grid, etc – and it works economically. Because we do value the ability to fly. So, we’ll pay handsomely for the ability to do that. At least in any sensible application a ‘plane powered by this sorta stuff (this is avgas, not jet fuel, but if you can make one then you can the other) won’t pay APD so that’ll cover at least some of any extra cost.
All the Puritans horrified at the ability of the proles to get a week on a sunny beach are going to be most disappointed of course but that just adds to the fun of watching it.
Me, I predict an absolute surge in synthetic fuels this next decade.