University of Dayton researchers help NREL get closer to production SAF from food waste

March 16, 2021 |

In Ohio, University of Dayton researchers have helped a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) team take another step toward turning wet food waste into a sustainable aviation fuel.

The team’s fuel from food waste resulted in a 165% drop in net carbon emissions compared to fossil jet fuel, not only because it’s cleaner, but also because the process removes millions of tons of food waste from landfills nationwide where it would produce methane, a greenhouse gas over 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

NREL’s analysis team has shown U.S. wet waste, including food waste, has enough energy content to replace about 20% of U.S. jet fuel consumption.

The group aspires to someday blend up to 70% of a version of its sustainable aviation fuel with conventional jet fuel.

This work was supported by DOE’s Bioenergy Technologies Office “Opportunities in Biojet” program, as well as the Chemical Catalysis for Bioenergy Consortium. For more information, explore NREL’s catalytical carbon transformation research.

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