Repsol, Aramco license Johnson Matthey, BP technologies for eFuels plant in Spain
Johnson Matthey and BP announced May 25 that their codeveloped, groundbreaking Fischer Tropsch CANS™ technology and Johnson Matthey’s innovative reverse water gas shift technology, HyCOgen™, have been selected for use by Aramco and Repsol at a new synthetic fuels plant in Bilbao, Spain.
The plant will be one of the world’s first to use renewable (green) hydrogen and CO2 as its only raw materials. It is due to be commissioned in 2024, with a starting capacity of more than 2,100 metric tons per year. It will produce a sustainable, synthetic, drop-in fuel that can be blended for existing road vehicle engines, planes and ships.
It is the second license signed for the FT CANS technology, which was jointly developed with BP to deliver significant environmental and operational benefits. It converts synthesis gas (syngas), generated from sources such as industrial emissions, direct air capture, municipal solid waste or other renewable biomass, into long-chain hydrocarbons suitable for the production of diesel and jet fuels.
It is the first license signed for Johnson Matthey’s recently launched HyCOgen technology, which uses a catalyzed process to convert CO2 and green hydrogen into carbon monoxide (CO), which is then combined with additional hydrogen to form syngas. Coupling HyCOgen and FT CANS technologies provide an end-to-end, scalable process optimized for high conversion efficiency—enabling the production of premium-quality synthetic crude oil.
“This agreement supports our ongoing work to develop lower-emission transport solutions and we are thrilled by the opportunity it represents,” said Ahmad Al-Khowaiter, Aramco’s chief technology officer. “Converting CO2 into synthetic, lower-carbon fuels can meaningfully contribute to the reduction of transport emissions and, through this strategic partnership, we aim to harness innovative technologies that can unlock the full potential of both sustainable fuels and chemicals—and demonstrate their competitiveness.”
Adriana Orejas, a director at Repsol, added, “The development of Bilbao synthetic fuel, where sustainable synthetic fuel shall be produced, represents an important step on our commitment of being a net-zero emission company by 2050, aligned with the climate objectives set out in Paris by COP21. Coupling Johnson Matthey, a reliable and demonstrated global leader technologist, HyCOgen and FT CANS Technology allow us to demonstrate the whole value chain of producing sustainable fuel from CO2 and renewable hydrogen as unique raw materials, complementing Repsol’s portfolio of low-carbon fuel alternatives.”
Noemie Turner with BP said this builds on the first FT CANS license to Fulcrum BioEnergy.