What Do You Think About Porsche’s Attempt To Brew Synthetic Automotive Fuel?

Even though news of Porsche teaming up with several “international companies”—namely Siemens Energy—to produce a “synthetic climate-neutral fuel” known as eFuel dropped earlier last week, we haven’t heard as much chatter as we thought it might garner.

The plan, known as “Haru Oni,” is to build a specialized plant in southern Chile that is expected to be able to produce more than 34,000 gallons of eFuel by 2022, with an end goal of over 145 million gallons by 2026.

According to the press release, this eFuel is at least partly composed of renewable methanol that is produced in a process that combines hydrogen with air that has been scrubbed of carbon dioxide. Regardless of how promising eFuel sounds, the advent of a somewhat more environmentally friendly synthetic fuel for cars could make for a nice comprise in the search for alternative fuel sources for our cars, if not a stop-gap until better technology exists that allows even more access to things electric or hydrogen-powered cars.

Does this eFuel sound promising, or are you going to keep pumping that dinosaur juice into your car until they pry it from your cold, dead hands? Also, where do you think eFuel stacks up compared to other alternative sources for fuel?

Read the full press release below:

Porsche, Siemens Energy and a lineup of international companies are developing and implementing a pilot project in Chile that is expected to yield the world’s first integrated, commercial, industrial-scale plant for making synthetic climate-neutral fuels (eFuels).

In the pilot phase, around 130,000 litres of eFuels will be produced as early as 2022. In two further phases, capacity will then be increased to about 55 million litres of eFuels a year by 2024, and around 550 million litres of eFuels by 2026. Porsche will be the primary customer for the green fuel. Other partners in the project are the energy firm AME and the petroleum company ENAP, from Chile, and Italian energy company Enel.

The “Haru Oni” pilot project in Magallanes Province takes advantage of the excellent wind conditions in southern Chile to produce climate-neutral fuel with the aid of green wind power. As part of Germany’s national hydrogen strategy, Siemens Energy will get a grant of some 8 million euros from the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy in support of the project, the ministry announced today.

Christian Bruch, CEO Siemens Energy

Establishing a sustainable energy economy is going to require some rethinking. Renewable energy will no longer be produced only where it’s needed, but where natural resources like wind and sun are available on a massive scale. New supply chains are going to arise all over the world to carry renewable energy from one region to another. That’s especially important for Germany, which – bottom-line – has to import energy if it’s going to meet its nationwide demand. Hydrogen will come to play an increasingly important role in storing and transporting energy, which is why the German government’s support for the project is an important signal.”

Porsche CEO Oliver Blume

Electromobility is a top priority at Porsche. eFuels for cars are a worthwhile complement to that – if they’re produced in parts of the world where a surplus of sustainable energy is available. They are an additional element on the road to decarbonisation. Their advantages lie in their ease of application: eFuels can be used in combustion engines and plug-in hybrids, and can make use of the existing network of filling stations. By using them, we can make a further contribution toward protecting the climate. As a maker of high-performance, efficient engines, we have broad technical expertise. We know exactly what fuel characteristics our engines need in order to operate with minimal impact on the climate. Our involvement in the world’s first commercial, integrated eFuels plant supports the development of the alternative fuels of the future.”

Federal Economy Minister Peter Altmaier

Hydrogen is a key component for successfully carrying out the energy transformation in every sector. That’s why, with the National Hydrogen Strategy, we aim to take advantage of the opportunities that hydrogen offers for the climate, energy and economic policy. We know we won’t be able to cover our national demand out of domestic production alone, and will need international partnerships. So I’m very pleased to see that Siemens Energy and Porsche are developing production capacity in other countries, along with importing structures, for green hydrogen and its daughter products. Thanks to German know-how, for the first time in the world innovation from the laboratory will now be applied in an integrated, commercial plant.”

Siemens Energy is a co-developer of the “Haru Oni” project (also known as HIF project), and is serving as a systems integrator to cover the entire value chain – from power generation using Siemens Gamesa wind turbines, to producing green hydrogen, to conversion into synthetic fuel. The company’s flexible PEM (PEM = Proton Exchange Membrane) electrolysis is ideally suited for using volatile wind power.

As the fuel’s primary user, Porsche is planning in the first phase to use the eFuels from Chile in beacon projects. These include using eFuels in Porsche’s motorsport fleet, at Porsche Experience Centres and, later, in series production sports cars. The sports car maker will start with an initial investment of roughly 20 million euros.

AME is the primary developer and owner of the HIF (Highly Innovative Fuels) project company. Enel is a co-funder of the plant, with a focus on wind power and electrolysis. ENAP will support the project by providing operating staff and with maintenance and logistics.

Chile, with its excellent climate conditions for wind power and the associated low cost of electricity, has a very high potential in international terms for producing, exporting and locally using green hydrogen. To generate green hydrogen, electrolysers use wind power to dissociate water into its two components: oxygen and hydrogen. In a second step, plans call for filtering CO2 out of the air and then combining it with the green hydrogen to form synthetic methanol. The result is renewable methanol, which can be converted into climate-friendly fuel using an MTG (methanol to gasoline) technology to be licensed and supported by ExxonMobil.

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ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
12/8/20 4:27 p.m.

*Like*

Patientzero
Patientzero HalfDork
12/8/20 4:44 p.m.

I heard about this awhile back before Porsche was involved.  I believe at the time they said in mass production the cast would be down around $2-3 per gallon.  I'm all for it.  I still stand by my statement that I don't believe electric cars are the answer to replace the ICE.  They do have their place but I think hydrogen or a fuel alternative are more likely. 

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/8/20 4:52 p.m.

I kind of wish they would go butanol, as it's a lot closer to gasoline.   But the idea is good.  And this would work well in Arizona, where rivers pass by, so you have a source of sun (power) and water (H2 source) for combining with CO2.   The other thought is to at least blend the alcohols, so that there can be a wider range of evaporation- helping engine cold starts.

I read about an idea like this a few years ago, and thought it was a great idea for energy storage.  This is just a liquid battery.  

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) UberDork
12/8/20 5:02 p.m.

If one is truly worried about carbon emissions then using nuclear power to turn water + air into gasoline/diesel means you can reuse all of the existing fueling infrastructure (tankers, pipelines, gas stations, etc) instead of needing a massive upgrade on the electrical grid.  It also means that you can take existing cars and trucks and make them carbon-neutral instead of requiring that they be junked and replaced with expensive EVs.  Makes a ton more sense than hydrogen fuel cells.

 

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
12/8/20 6:29 p.m.

In reply to Colin Wood :

Talk about old news!!!! It's called flex fuel. America has been using it forever.  Moonshine is ethanol and back in Model T Ford days a mechanic went in and drilled out jets.  
  In the 1980's Iowa became the first state in the nation to vote on presidential primaries in order to mandate the use of Ethanol. 
    Methanol is some nasty stuff. So switching to ethanol was a no brainer.  
Now-days we have flex fuel option where we can use up to 85% ethanol  just by putting it in our gas tank.   If the price of E85 is to high the next time we can use regular unleaded. Nothing else to do. It's a cheap option. Costs $99 for a new Ford Chevy is about the same Ive seen it on Dodge and others. 

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/8/20 6:33 p.m.

In reply to frenchyd :

Did you read the notes?  It's not distilled liquor.  It's methanol made from H2 and atmospheric CO2- that's what makes it different.

ShawnG
ShawnG UltimaDork
12/8/20 6:46 p.m.

Zie Germans were making gasoline from coal in the mid-1930s.

Seems like a logical step.

15f80
15f80 New Reader
12/8/20 7:00 p.m.

In reply to Patientzero :

What is your favorite economically feasible way of generating commercial quantities of hydrogen that doesn't involve natural gas or crude oil? I used to work for an oil company and am typically very critical of anything that isn't using only water as a source.

Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter)
Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
12/8/20 7:21 p.m.

I seem to recall something called "seafuel" that was an experiment in the 70's.  Seawater and algae were distilled into something akin to bio-diesel.  A quick internet search for it reveled nothing today. I learned of it when doing a college paper in the early 90's.

Patientzero
Patientzero HalfDork
12/8/20 7:26 p.m.

In reply to alfadriver (Forum Supporter) :

No, he never does.

Patientzero
Patientzero HalfDork
12/8/20 7:32 p.m.
15f80 said:

In reply to Patientzero :

What is your favorite economically feasible way of generating commercial quantities of hydrogen that doesn't involve natural gas or crude oil? I used to work for an oil company and am typically very critical of anything that isn't using only water as a source.

"hydrogen or a fuel alternative are more likely." 

No idea man, I'm not a chemical engineer. I'm just a guy on the internet giving my opinion.  It just makes more sense in my little brain to use all the infrastructure that is already in place to keep the millions of vehicles we already have on the road.  

 

15f80
15f80 New Reader
12/8/20 8:31 p.m.
Patientzero said:
15f80 said:

In reply to Patientzero :

What is your favorite economically feasible way of generating commercial quantities of hydrogen that doesn't involve natural gas or crude oil? I used to work for an oil company and am typically very critical of anything that isn't using only water as a source.

"hydrogen or a fuel alternative are more likely." 

No idea man, I'm not a chemical engineer. I'm just a guy on the internet giving my opinion.  It just makes more sense in my little brain to use all the infrastructure that is already in place to keep the millions of vehicles we already have on the road.  

 

Alternate fuels are fine, especially if they remove CO2 from the atmosphere. I am not a chemical engineer either, but that infrastructure is largely responsible for climate change. Lots of jobs and money to dismantle it to build up a new paradigm. 120 years ago most people owned horses. Except for police and parades, I haven't seen anybody riding a horse in an urban city in 50 years.

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
12/8/20 8:32 p.m.
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to frenchyd :

Did you read the notes?  It's not distilled liquor.  It's methanol made from H2 and atmospheric CO2- that's what makes it different.

Haven't you read what I've posted countless times? Methanol is nasty stuff.  It's commercially made from coal and produces some nasty by products. 
Drink a glass and die.   
Ethanol on the other hand, Drink a glass and get happy.    It's growth produces oxygen while its growing and bio degrades back into nutrients for the soil.  It doesn't have to be corn. Many natural products can produce ethanol.  

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
12/8/20 8:56 p.m.

Airplanes are going to be running on chemical fuel for the future unless batteries get more energy density by multiple orders of magnitude.  Powering them off fuel generated from existing atmospheric carbon seems like a step in the right direction vs. pumping it out of the ground.  Methanol wouldn't quite get us there as the energy density is too low, but again, step in the right direction.

Obviously this is a win for ICE cars as well.

I still see a path for ICEs to not get pushed out by BEVs if humans can figure out an economical way to pull carbon from the atmosphere.

 

 

Patientzero
Patientzero HalfDork
12/8/20 10:15 p.m.

In reply to 15f80 :

I'm talking mainly about gas stations, fuel distribution, etc.  It's going to take awhile before there are battery charging stations on every street corner and the cars are not yet designed in a way to make swapping batteries at pit stop feasible.  The electric grid in most major cities is already barely sufficient.  If everyone in Los Angeles went home and started charging an electric car tonight it would probably implode.  

What makes the most sense to me for EV's would be in-city delivery trucks.  They get parked and charged every night, cut down on pollution and noise in the city, and weight isn't really an issue. 

 

As for horses.  You clearly don't live around Amish or have ever been to Houston, lol.

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) UberDork
12/8/20 10:26 p.m.
15f80 said:

What is your favorite economically feasible way of generating commercial quantities of hydrogen that doesn't involve natural gas or crude oil? I used to work for an oil company and am typically very critical of anything that isn't using only water as a source.

Electrolysis is the obvious one.

And yes, it takes more energy to liberate that hydrogen than you'll get by burning it.  Don't think of this as a fuel -- the fuel is uranium (or solar if you want to be pie-in-the-sky environmentalist).  The hydrogen is just a means to run an internal combustion engine using the power released by those nuclear reactors.

The Navy has been looking at this as a way to run the jet fighters on an aircraft carrier off that carrier's reactor without needing to ship (or even worse, FLY) fuel out to it.

 

spandak
spandak HalfDork
12/8/20 10:57 p.m.

I think it's really interesting that some companies are doubling down on the bet that electric is the future while others are looking for fuel alternatives. 
If I was a betting man I would bet on fuel alternatives. 
I stayed home today because my company didn't have power. Edison shuts off the grid when it gets a little windy because of the disaster they were involved with the other year in NorCal. How on earth will we add millions of cars to the already struggling grid? I don't see it. 
Anyway, good for Porsche. I like how they think 

RichardSIA
RichardSIA HalfDork
12/8/20 11:05 p.m.

Ho Hum, another breathless press release for a "New" fuel tech.

I wonder who gets the big money and who will be left holding the empty bag on this one?

These flatulent exhalations come around frequently. I recall the Popular Mechanics cover article, was it forty or fifty years ago, where someone figured out a catalyst to turn alcohol into gasoline. The process worked but needed a lot of alcohol to produce gasoline. I want one of these units for my own use in case the Eco-Nuts do ban gasoline for my ICE (Yes, from my cold dead hands) cars. Not the old PM article but one of several I found with a quick search, http://wwwchem.uwimona.edu.jm/lectures/synfuel.html

There was also the "Anything into oil" process a few years ago. A demo plant was built, varied trash and animal offal were converted into a light/Diesel oil that could easily be refined into lighter gasoline. The process worked, the economics did not, as it was assumed that the feed-stocks would be free or subsidized. This one should have gone further if only to lessen our use of land-fill's and recycle the piles of coal tar sitting around the country. Apparently the eco-Nuts did not like it as they hate oil more than they really want to clean up the environment.

EDIT: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermal_depolymerization

I am sure there are several more I missed. ICE is not going anywhere despite so many breathless press releases and lunatic fringe Gov. mandates. Reality will win out no matter how hard the Eco-Nuts and Musk-ovites push their electric nirvana.

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/9/20 6:04 a.m.
frenchyd said:
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to frenchyd :

Did you read the notes?  It's not distilled liquor.  It's methanol made from H2 and atmospheric CO2- that's what makes it different.

Haven't you read what I've posted countless times? Methanol is nasty stuff.  It's commercially made from coal and produces some nasty by products. 
Drink a glass and die.   
Ethanol on the other hand, Drink a glass and get happy.    It's growth produces oxygen while its growing and bio degrades back into nutrients for the soil.  It doesn't have to be corn. Many natural products can produce ethanol.  

Sorry, but gasoline and diesel are also not on my regular diet, so having methanol not be good for me isn't a big deal. 

Also, you still didn't read the news- this is methanol made from H2 (probably from electrolysis) and atmospheric CO2.  Not coal, not wood, not any other source to fabricate methanol.  H2 and CO2.  Pretty interesting.  So when you have an area of lots of excess energy, you can make H2 from H2O, harvest CO2 from the air, and then turn that into methanol.   Solving multiple things at the same time- energy storage, liquid energy for vehicles, and reduction in atmospheric CO2.

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/9/20 6:06 a.m.

In reply to Patientzero :

The fuel distribution issue is where I would hope for butanol- as I understand that can run in the already established gasoline pipeline network.  Not sure about that, but that's what I have heard in the past.

MadScientistMatt
MadScientistMatt UltimaDork
12/9/20 7:14 a.m.

Apparently there is also a second step to process the methanol into something more gasoline-like, although they don't say exactly what (butanol would be a reasonable bet). Methanol would require a lot of retrofit work to adapt to existing fuel systems. I wonder if they'll have options for Diesel and kerosene / jet fuel as well.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
12/9/20 7:18 a.m.

 

RichardSIA said:

The process worked, the economics did not, as it was assumed that the feed-stocks would be free or subsidized. This one should have gone further if only to lessen our use of land-fill's and recycle the piles of coal tar sitting around the country.

Eventually, through a carbon economy and increased efficiencies, it will be cheaper to get carbon from a supply of recycled goods, the air, etc. than it will be to remove it from the ground.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
12/9/20 7:19 a.m.
MadScientistMatt said:

Apparently there is also a second step to process the methanol into something more gasoline-like, although they don't say exactly what (butanol would be a reasonable bet). Methanol would require a lot of retrofit work to adapt to existing fuel systems. I wonder if they'll have options for Diesel and kerosene / jet fuel as well.

True, but tweaking designs of existing ICEs to produce new ones that run on methanol would be trivial compared to a fundamental change in locomotion.

pinchvalve (Forum Supporter)
pinchvalve (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/9/20 7:20 a.m.

Sounds crazy, but hey, synthetic rubber was developed to offset shortages and monopolies in natural rubber supplies. Synthetic fuel could do the same.

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/9/20 7:26 a.m.
ProDarwin said:
MadScientistMatt said:

Apparently there is also a second step to process the methanol into something more gasoline-like, although they don't say exactly what (butanol would be a reasonable bet). Methanol would require a lot of retrofit work to adapt to existing fuel systems. I wonder if they'll have options for Diesel and kerosene / jet fuel as well.

True, but tweaking designs of existing ICEs to produce new ones that run on methanol would be trivial compared to a fundamental change in locomotion.

Using alcohol isn't a big deal.  Having a fuel that is robust to everyone, from Arizona to Fairbanks, is the important thing, to me.  Brazil has E100 for consumption, but the cars also have a small gas tank for cold starts.  I would hope that we could have a better fuel to start engines than that.

rslifkin
rslifkin UltraDork
12/9/20 7:26 a.m.

If something like this means we can keep interesting cars around for longer, I'm all for it.  Should be a great thing for stuff like boats where we still haven't reached the point where electric power can effectively replace an ICE. 

rslifkin
rslifkin UltraDork
12/9/20 7:32 a.m.
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) said:

Using alcohol isn't a big deal.  Having a fuel that is robust to everyone, from Arizona to Fairbanks, is the important thing, to me.  Brazil has E100 for consumption, but the cars also have a small gas tank for cold starts.  I would hope that we could have a better fuel to start engines than that.

Back to the old diesels with a spray can of ether under the hood, just automate a squirt at startup?  And maybe a hair dryer of sorts to pre-heat the air being fed to the intake for cold starts? 

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/9/20 8:00 a.m.

In reply to rslifkin :

For sure, one could.  Just adds a complication that not many consumers would like, though.  The DEF isn't something that is overly popular....

MadScientistMatt
MadScientistMatt UltimaDork
12/9/20 10:19 a.m.

A fuel that could be put in an existing car that has no flex fuel capabilities, without any sort of emissions recertification, would have a much wider market. I could convert my wife's Accord or my '66 Dart to run on methanol with the right parts - but getting that Accord conversion CARB certified would be another matter.

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/9/20 10:47 a.m.

In reply to MadScientistMatt :

Methanol is CH3OH Stoicheometry is 6.4:1

Ethanol is C2H5OH Stoich is 9.1:1

Butanol is C4H9OH 11.1:1

Gasoline averages C8H18 14.7:1

Of the alcohols, butanol has the closest Carbon to Hydrogen ratio to gas, and stoich is closest, but not close enough.   Need some longer chain HC's to make it work right.  Some bio oil, possibly.

I'm really not sure where it would end up being, but that's something that has to be kept in mind if we really want a fully bio fuel for the fleet.

RichardSIA
RichardSIA HalfDork
12/9/20 10:59 a.m.

At the end of the day this is mostly a "Solution" to non-existent problems. Perceptions are being deliberately skewed to serve political agendas.

We are NOT on the verge of running out of oil ("Peak Oil"). In fact "Dino"* oil is so abundant that production is artificially limited to keep prices UP! (Permian Basin among others, OPEC).

Higher levels of CO2 lead to a Greener planet, crops thrive on it and the alleged increases in CO2 are FAR from being harmful to humans. The current levels are not at historical highs, please do not allow the radical Eco-Nuts propaganda to panic you.

*Which in fact has nothing to do with DINO's, as everyone here should know. Oil fields actually replenish over time and there are no new Dino's involved in that.

Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter)
Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter) Dork
12/9/20 2:13 p.m.

Richard, it's not about not having oil, it's about not WANTING to burn it to reduce total CO2 emissions to curb cliimate change. CO2 leads to a tree friendly planet, but may make us go extinct, so depends on your goals cool

It would be interesting to see what can scale quicker:

  • EV with green power feeding charging
  • FC EV with green hydrogen
  • Fully syntheic fuel from green feedstock

I think the trickiest part of the 3rd is that the cost/tech is futher out than the other two. Likely great to keep some exisiting infrastructure going (people that can't won't convert to different vehicles, or not economically viable).

Agreed with the challenges on methanol other than frenchy can't drink it. It's great in race cars but for retrofit vehicle use, it's not so great. Maybe better solutions but will depend a lot on additional technologies to get there. 

Siemens is restructuring heavily to enable this with an entirely new corp to suppor things like this, including electrolyis technologies. Google it, it's a big move.

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
12/9/20 5:33 p.m.
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) said:
frenchyd said:
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to frenchyd :

Did you read the notes?  It's not distilled liquor.  It's methanol made from H2 and atmospheric CO2- that's what makes it different.

Haven't you read what I've posted countless times? Methanol is nasty stuff.  It's commercially made from coal and produces some nasty by products. 
Drink a glass and die.   
Ethanol on the other hand, Drink a glass and get happy.    It's growth produces oxygen while its growing and bio degrades back into nutrients for the soil.  It doesn't have to be corn. Many natural products can produce ethanol.  

Sorry, but gasoline and diesel are also not on my regular diet, so having methanol not be good for me isn't a big deal. 

Also, you still didn't read the news- this is methanol made from H2 (probably from electrolysis) and atmospheric CO2.  Not coal, not wood, not any other source to fabricate methanol.  H2 and CO2.  Pretty interesting.  So when you have an area of lots of excess energy, you can make H2 from H2O, harvest CO2 from the air, and then turn that into methanol.   Solving multiple things at the same time- energy storage, liquid energy for vehicles, and reduction in atmospheric CO2.

Do you want me to explain all the ways methanol attacks the human body?  Look at the equipment drag racers use now days.  Because it's a tiny community it doesn't make the news. But read the medical literature. 
       As far as their process, I've been reading about that same process for decades.  Not being a chemical engineer some of it gets lost to me and I just sit back and wait for their predictions to come true.  
I'm not going to say they will ultimately fail. Like I said I'm not a chemical engineer. My issue is more, "should we?" Does it have to be methanol?  Why not Ethanol?  
 

RichardSIA
RichardSIA HalfDork
12/9/20 6:13 p.m.
Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter) said:

Richard, it's not about not having oil, it's about not WANTING to burn it to reduce total CO2 emissions to curb cliimate change. CO2 leads to a tree friendly planet, but may make us go extinct, so depends on your goals cool

First you have to embrace the notion that AGW is real, I do not.

I do live in the high desert of Nevada where anyone may observe Millennial "Climate change" at a glance. Most of the state used to be under water, Lake Lahontan, and you can see the old water levels on nearly every mountain and hill. So the area has been getting warmer and drying out FAR longer than Man has been remotely capable of having even a minuscule impact. There are MANY causes of planetary warming and I doubt we have the least control over any of them. Big subject, books have been written, but of course any that do not support the Green/GAIA centric mantra are suppressed.

AGW is a wealth transfer scheme, Carbon tax is set up to make Billionaires of the select few, at our expense.

And %%$#!, now it's inevitably all gone political. frown But then, the whole exercise that launched this thread is more political than actually being necessary. 

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/9/20 6:23 p.m.

In reply to frenchyd :

The process is not quite 5 years old.  And Methanol because it's the simplest alcohol.  Also, there's a tremendous industrial demand for Methanol.

I'm sure there are a lot of people trying to make ethanol from atmospheric CO2 and H2, but the chemistry to make that happens is a lot more difficult.  

Making CH3OH just requires a capture of one CO2 molecule to make it  

And I am guessing that the chemistry is 

3H2 + CO2 ---> CH3OH + H2O

This may not be the most efficient battery storage device, but it is useful.

Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter)
Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter) Dork
12/9/20 9:08 p.m.

Ammonia and methanol will come first then the fancy stuff. You will need to treat byproducts (formaldehyde, etc)  but not the co2 as it is carbon neutral already. 
 

also anyone that doesn't believe in some sort of human induced climate impact should view this cartoon as you need it spelled out for you a bit https://xkcd.com/1732/

RichardSIA
RichardSIA HalfDork
12/9/20 10:06 p.m.

 https://xkcd.com/1732/, A big yawn, I work part time for a guy who assures me virtually every day that "The end is near", according to him we will begin "The seven years trials" portending the second coming of J.C., next spring.  He's made the same dire prediction for the last several years. laugh

I don't dispute that we are getting an itsy-bitsy teeny-tiny* bit warmer by my own observation, just that I/We are responsible or capable of altering the situation.

I'm sure if I look around I will find plenty of "Data" to dispute the cartoon graph. When I was a kid the dire prediction being taken oh so seriously was for an impending Ice Age. THAT I clearly remember. 

*Most if not all observations to date within the margin of error, not to mention that the infamous "Hockey-Stick" has been discredited, plus the not insignificant issues of data being manipulated in so many ways. Support Glo-Bull warming to get grants, dispute it with your own careful studies and be ostracized.

This reminds me, I have to break the coolant lines on the junk freezer so that I may dispose of it for ten dollars as scrap instead of fifty as Hazarous Waste! 

 

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/9/20 10:23 p.m.

I for one have no personal attachment to fossil fuels one way or the other. They make my car run, so i use them. If something else can make my car run for a similar price with similar performance, economy, and reliability, and its better for the environment, I'm all for that. Whether this project by Porsche is that, I don't have the expertise to know (though I expect engineers working for Porsche do have the expertise). 

The whole 'pry my fossil fuels out of my cold dead hands' shtick is just as dumb as people who used to say the same about leaded gasoline and asbestos brake pads. Why anyone would have an attachment to something just because its what they've "always used" is beyond me, especially if the replacement is intrinsically better.  If everyone had always felt that way, we'd all still be driving steam-powered cars. 

 

Justjim75
Justjim75 Dork
12/9/20 10:37 p.m.

I've been saying for 20+ years we need basically an AWD plug in electric car with a multi fuel ICE generator in the trunk, tiny even to aid solar in charging the batteries where even if the batteries were dead you could run the generator to get you to a charging station in a 30-45 mph limp mode.  Propane, fry oil, synthetic fuel, hydrogen, gasoline, e100, Bacardi 151, whatever you can find.

I think more people would be on board if they knew they could throw a couple of camping style canisters in the car for a road trip

Oh, we need paint that looks normal but is transparent to the solar panels layered into the body's composite body panels

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
12/9/20 10:38 p.m.

In reply to alfadriver (Forum Supporter) :

Like I said not being a chemical engineer I may have processes mixed up.  Or who's taking the latest flyer at it. But I most recently heard about it on NPR years ago ( National Public Radio ) before that various articles I've read. 
I thought it was a promising concept originally ( that was before Cold fusion, Just to place the timing. ) So we are talking decades not just a few years. 

The0retical (Forum Supporter)
The0retical (Forum Supporter) UberDork
12/10/20 12:07 a.m.

In reply to RichardSIA :

RichardSIA
RichardSIA HalfDork
12/10/20 2:03 a.m.
The0retical (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to RichardSIA :

A question mark in a blue square?

Hmm, symbolic of the whole discussion?

Unicorn farts and electrified pipe-dreams will not run any car I own nor will ever own. So unless you or others intend to seize my cars by force and take them from me it's ICE for as long as I live.

Anyone happy to endure the next generation of transport is welcome to do so, just as long as they do not attempt to force me into the same predicament. The underlying issues here are far more than just a new Snake Oil, AKA "E-Fuel"* 

As the old quote goes, "May your chains rest lightly upon you".

*BTW, the backers of this may have to find another name for it, seems E-Fuel is already taken by another group. Reference turned up quickly when I researched links I've already posted.

STM317
STM317 UberDork
12/10/20 3:51 a.m.
RichardSIA said:

Unicorn farts and electrified pipe-dreams will not run any car I own nor will ever own. So unless you or others intend to seize my cars by force and take them from me it's ICE for as long as I live.

Anyone happy to endure the next generation of transport is welcome to do so, just as long as they do not attempt to force me into the same predicament. The underlying issues here are far more than just a new Snake Oil, AKA "E-Fuel"* 

As the old quote goes, "May your chains rest lightly upon you".

Nobody is trying to take your ICEs.

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/10/20 6:08 a.m.

In reply to RichardSIA :

ICE transportation has been around only 150 years, and on a mass population basis, just about 100.

So the idea that it's permanent solution is kind of nuts.  Tech will certainly change that some day.  We don't need laws like horse owners put in place that were anti car.  

It's also kind of odd to proclaim that ICE's should not be regulated, as they are heavily regulated to mitigate the direct harm to the public and environment right now.  Which is also an indicator that human activity can impact the environment in a negative way.

While i have my doubts right now over EV's, I accept that the tech will change.  

Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter)
Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter) Dork
12/10/20 6:52 a.m.
STM317 said:

Nobody is trying to take your ICEs.

Wouldn't it be nice to have Richard participate in abating climate change through synthetic fuel, so even him as a skeptic can be part of the solution?

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
12/10/20 10:46 a.m.
RichardSIA said:
The0retical (Forum Supporter) said:

In reply to RichardSIA :

A question mark in a blue square?

Hmm, symbolic of the whole discussion?

Unicorn farts and electrified pipe-dreams will not run any car I own nor will ever own. So unless you or others intend to seize my cars by force and take them from me it's ICE for as long as I live.

Anyone happy to endure the next generation of transport is welcome to do so, just as long as they do not attempt to force me into the same predicament. The underlying issues here are far more than just a new Snake Oil, AKA "E-Fuel"* 

As the old quote goes, "May your chains rest lightly upon you".

*BTW, the backers of this may have to find another name for it, seems E-Fuel is already taken by another group. Reference turned up quickly when I researched links I've already posted.

Please stop trying to flounder the thread. 

Justjim75
Justjim75 Dork
12/10/20 11:02 a.m.

I reay wish it weren't so, but if you can't register or insure a vehicle you can't drive it, so if "they" say no ICE then no ICE it is.  Thats why we have to hire the people sensitive to our position and no this "ban cow farts" crowd

STM317
STM317 UberDork
12/10/20 11:14 a.m.

In reply to Justjim75 :

Any "bans" that I've seen discussed or legislated have been on new vehicle sales only. I'm not aware of any case where legislators are banning ICEs already on the streets from being registered. And, by being carbon neutral the fuel used as the topic of this discussion is actually likely to extend the viability of ICEs from a regulatory perspective.

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