Calix part of consortium awarded funding to manufacture sustainable fuels from captured CO₂


Calix is pleased to announce it is a member of an Australian-German consortium that aims to develop the production of sustainable fuels from renewable energy, green hydrogen and captured process CO2 emissions.

As announced by the Hon Chris Bowen MP, Minister for Climate Change and Energy on 27 January, the “HyGATE” Solar Methanol Project has been awarded AU$19.48 million from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and €13.2 million (~AU$20.19m) from Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) to develop a world-first green methanol demonstration plant in Port Augusta, South Australia.

Methanol and sustainable fuels

Exporting green hydrogen produced in Australia to Germany offers the promise of leveraging Australia’s abundant renewable energy resources to help the decarbonisation of German industry. Methanol is a versatile hydrogen derivative and has the potential to act as an effective green hydrogen carrier.

The clean and economical synthesis of methanol could help enable the decarbonisation of hard-to-abate transport sectors such as aviation and shipping, responsible for 4.3% of global CO2 emissions.

The Solar Methanol Project

The Solar Methanol Project aims to integrate several innovative low emission technologies to deliver renewable power and process heat, green hydrogen electrolysis, and, with Calix’s Low Emissions Intensity Lime and Cement (Leilac) technology, renewably powered electric calcination of limestone and the efficient capture of unavoidable process CO2 emissions.

In addition to Calix, the Solar Methanol Project consortium includes Australian cleantech company Vast Solar and leading engineering and consultancy firm Fichtner, and is supported by the Australian Solar Thermal Institute.

The Project intends to renewably power a 10MW electrolyser to produce green hydrogen, and a lime plant that produces CO2 as an unavoidable process emission. The clean energy, hydrogen and CO2 will then be used to synthesise up to 7,500 tonnes per year of green methanol to be developed for use as a sustainable transport fuel.

The Project aims to be a catalyst for a solar methanol industry in Australia, with the potential to significantly scale domestic green fuel use as well as potential exports to Germany and other global markets.

Low and zero emissions lime

To synthesise green methanol, the Project intends to use up to 15,000 tonnes per annum of CO2 captured by Calix’s Leilac technology during the production of low emissions lime.

Adbri is partnering with Calix and Leilac as part of its net zero pathway to enable the efficient capture of unavoidable process CO2 emissions and the use of renewable sources of energy in the production of low and zero emissions lime.

In collaboration with the Project and subject to commercial agreements, Leilac and Adbri are pursuing opportunities to develop a renewably powered lime plant that would produce low emissions lime and capture process CO2 for potential use in methanol synthesis by the Solar Methanol Project. While Calix and Adbri are not direct recipients of HyGATE funding, HyGATE represents excellent potential to derive direct value for captured CO2 into an opportunity with significant potential to scale.

Lime is an essential material for several industries, including mining and metals refining, water treatment, steel, paper, pharmaceuticals and agriculture. Decarbonising the production of lime is a critical enabling step for reducing the carbon intensity of these hard-to-abate industries.

Calix CEO and Managing Director, Phil Hodgson said:

“Calix’s Leilac technology will be used to make zero emissions lime iPhil Hodgsonn partnership with Adbri for Adbri customers, using renewable electricity and efficient capture of unavoidable CO2 emissions from limestone. At the same time, Calix and Adbri are excited to work with the Solar Methanol consortium to enable the supply of captured CO2 emissions to make green methanol.

We are delighted to be progressing plans with Adbri for zero emissions lime with electrification and CO2 capture. As part of the HyGATE consortium we look forward to the outcomes of the HyGATE project, which has the potential to further catalyse support for CO2 capture and to pioneer new green fuels for aviation and shipping.”

 

Mark Irwin

Adbri Interim CEO, Mark Irwin said:

“As a leading Australian producer of cement and lime with a commitment to be net zero by 2050, we recognise partnership with companies such as Calix are essential for the development of technology necessary to reach our goal. We are excited about the potential to supply zero emissions lime to our customers, a critical product in a decarbonised economy.”

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