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May 25, 2017

Fraunhofer UMSICHT Launches Project To Convert Biomass To Synthetic Fuel

Lauren M. Graham, Ph.D.

By Lauren M. Graham, Ph.D.

On May 15, 2017, the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety, and Energy Technology UMSICHT (Fraunhofer UMSICHT) announced the launch of TO-SYN-FUEL, a project involving 12 industrial, scientific, and small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) partners focused on building up, operating, and demonstrating the production of synthetic fuels and green hydrogen from waste biomass.  TO-SYN-FUEL is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program and will utilize the TCR® technology developed by Fraunhofer UMSICHT to convert residual biomass into hydrogen-rich synthetic gas, biochar, and liquid bio-oil, which will be converted further into a diesel or fuel equivalent via high pressure hydro-deoxygenation (HDO) and conventional refining processes.  The goal of the project is to demonstrate and validate the technical and commercial viability of the integrated technology.  According to the researchers, scale up of 100 plants using TO-SYN-FUEL technology throughout Europe would avoid greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions equivalent to five million people per year and divert millions of tons of organic wastes from landfill to sustainable biofuel production.