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  • Zero Petroleum

Zero to accelerate synthetic sustainable aviation fuel adoption with Airbus

Photo: Zero Petroleum

Zero Petroleum announced June 10 that it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Airbus to advance the development of synthetic sustainable aviation fuel (eSAF) and enable commercial-scale adoption of the technology by combining their unique resources and expertise.


Both companies have made significant contributions to the field—Zero secured the Guinness World Records® title of “first aircraft powered by synthetic fuel” in 2021 and Airbus has successfully tested commercial and military aircraft with 100 percent SAF.


Their collaboration demonstrates a firm commitment toward aviation’s 2050 net-zero goals.


In commercial-scale production, Zero’s 100 percent drop-in synthetic SAF will be manufactured in a fully carbon-neutral process using just air and water.


The fuel’s energy density and ability to power existing engines without modification make it an ideal solution for aviation, which faces distinct challenges as a hard-to-abate sector.


Zero’s agreement with Airbus could lead to a new technology pathway being certified for the everyday use of eSAF in aviation.


“By combining Airbus’ legacy of innovation with Zero’s proven, high-performance eSAF solution, we are well positioned to advance on the industry's net-zero decarbonization targets faster than today,” said Zero CEO Paddy Lowe.


Airbus has set targets of 15 percent SAF in its global fuel mix by the end of 2024 and at least 30 percent by 2030, advocating for progress in the regulatory environment and building a robust supply chain.


Compared to fossil fuels, SAF can reduce fossil-CO2 emissions by 80 percent on average over the fuel’s lifecycle.


eSAF specifically can reduce fossil CO2 emissions by up to 99 percent and will make a critical contribution to the scale up of global SAF production eventually for all aviation demand.


Zero recently opened the world’s first fully featured synthetic fuel plant (Plant Zero.1) near Oxford, U.K., and has plans to build a commercial-scale plant, which the company said is to begin production in 2026.



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