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Audi collaboration announces e-benzin synthetic fuel

OEM and Global Bioenergies develop 100% iso-octane, produced without petroleum

 

Audi and collaboration partner Global Bioenergies have produced the first batch of e-benzin – a new synthetically produced fuel that does not require petroleum. The new fuel is 100% iso-octane and therefore has an outstanding octane rating of RON 100. Audi e-benzin contains no sulfur or benzene, and so burns very cleanly. The high-grade fuel enables engines to use high compression ratios for enhanced efficiency. Audi will test the new fuel in the lab and in test engines. In the medium term, the OEM and Global Bioenergies aim to modify the process so it requires no biomass, instead requiring just water, hydrogen, CO2 and sunlight.

Reiner Mangold, head of sustainable product development at Audi, emphasized that the German auto maker has taken a broad-based approach to the development of CO2-neutral, non-fossil fuels: “Global Bioenergies has demonstrated the viability of the Audi e-benzin production process. That is a big step in our Audi e-fuels strategy.”

Audi is already producing larger quantities of e-gas (synthetic methane) on an industrial scale for its customers. Other research projects with various partners are dedicated to Audi e-ethanol, Audi e-diesel and Audi e-benzin.

Global Bioenergies operates a pilot plant for the production of isobutene, the starting material for Audi e-benzin, in the French town of Pomacle, near Reims. Isobutene is produced there from renewable raw materials rather than the usual petroleum.

Another project partner is the Fraunhofer Center for Chemical-Biotechnological Processes (CPB) in Leuna, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. Researchers there use hydrogen to transform the gaseous isobutene into liquid iso-octane. Global Bioenergies is building a demonstration plant at the Fraunhofer Center that will begin producing larger quantities in 2016.

May 28, 2015
 

 

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