Research on CO2-neutral future fuels

High-performance fuels based on methanol

Prüfstand zur Untersuchung möglicher Wechselwirkungen zwischen neuen Kraftstoffen und kraftstoffführenden Bauteilen von Fahrzeugen. Foto: OWI

16 January 2019 – To achieve its climate targets, Germany has to reduce its total CO2 emissions by 38% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels. One measure to achieve the targets is to increase the share of renewable energy sources in the energy supply. Time is crucial, therefore efficient, economically sensible and practicable solutions are required. The “C³-Mobility” research project, which has recently started, is to investigate pathways for various climate-neutral, electricity-based fuels. They are produced from CO2, water and renewable electricity. An evaluation carried out in advance showed that the “methanol path” offers good conditions for meeting the above-mentioned requirements. Renewable methanol can be produced in large quantities at relatively manageable efforts and then easily transported as a liquid energy source. The goal of the technologies in question is to make a significant contribution to the reduction of CO2 emissions in the short term is estimated to be very high and is therefore being investigated in this project.

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Development of a high-quality, low-CO2 biofuel

Research and Innovation project REDIFUEL

Hardware-in-the-Loop test rig for testing the interaction of regenerative fuels and combustibles with technical components. Photo: OWI

30 November 2018 – To achieve the European Union’s climate protection targets, greenhouse gas emissions must be cut down to 80% compared to 1990 levels by 2050, while in road transport, this will require 60% reduction in emissions. Nowadays road transport is still almost entirely based on conventional fuels and internal combustion engines. One pathway could be to gradually replace fossil fuels, on one hand by introducing electric mobility to cover short distances and on the other hand by introducing low-CO2 2nd generation liquid bio-based fuels to the market to ensure mobility over long distances.

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20 years Oel-Waerme-Institut

Research for the energy transition

Brennstoffproben im Test. Foto: OWI

Fuel samples under test. Photo: OWI

29 November 2018 –
The OWI Oel-Waerme-Institut celebrates its 20th birthday this autumn. The non-profit research institute was founded in Aachen in 1998 and has been an affiliated institute of RWTH Aachen University since 2007. After its foundation, the OWI experienced a rapid growth with an expansion of its research topics and can look back on the successful implementation of numerous important research projects.

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Technologieforum mit positiver Resonanz

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Industrial heat generated with biogenic fuels

Bio-multi-fuel burner developed

Flame pattern in 100 kW combined operation with EL heating oil and biogas. Photo: GWI

22. October 2018 – In a joint research project, the Gas- und Wärme-Institut Essen e. V. (GWI) and the OWI Oel-Waerme-Institut (OWI) have designed, manufactured and tested a combined biofuel burner for the generation of industrial process heat. In addition to low-calorific gases, the burner can also burn liquid biogenic fuels, such as vegetable oil, in an effective, reliable manner with low emissions.

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Suche nach dem “perfekten” Heizöl

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Efficient use of industrial waste heat

Modular heat accumulator in development

A modular heat accumulator is being developed for the use of industrial waste heat. Photo: Steinbeis-Innovationszentrum Innovations- und Wissensstrategien / ENSTOR: Energy Storage Network

9th July 2018 – Industrial waste heat is a by-product of many industrial processes and is currently often released into the environment unused. This applies in particular to high-temperature processes with process temperatures of more than 1,000 °C. The costs and CO2 emissions associated with the provision of energy represent a major burden for companies and the environment. In industry, the waste heat is already frequently used for heating other processes and for generating electricity or compressed air through direct recoupling. However, in many processes there is a time lag between the availability of waste heat and the demand for heat or electrical energy.

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Diesel fuel and heating oil

Slowing down natural aging processes

Interior view of a heating oil pump: After about 400 hours of operation with biofuel oil (heating oil with 10 % FAME), deposits are clearly visible. Photo: OWI

6 July 2018 – Diesel fuel and heating oil, which chemically belong to the middle distillate group, are subject to natural ageing during storage. The addition of alternative and biogenic liquid fuels to mineral oil-based middle distillates can accelerate the aging processes. For example, fatty acid methyl esters from regenerative raw materials promote the increased formation of sediments and acids as well as oxidation. The causes of sedimentation have not yet been fully explained. If fuels produced from different fossil and alternative raw material sources are mixed, effects occur which have not yet been sufficiently investigated.

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Increasing operational safety of auxiliary heaters

Doctorate at OWI

For the tests to produce deposits on porous media evaporators, fuel mixtures were stored for several months at 8°C and 40°C to simulate ageing. Photo: OWI

27 June 2018 – M.Sc. Winfried Koch successfully defended his dissertation at RWTH Aachen University in April 2018. His work deals with the influence of the thermal stability of liquid fuels and combustibles on the formation and degradation of residues in porous media evaporators. It was written at the OWI Oel-Waerme-Institut as part of the research project “Influence of evaporation behaviour on the coking tendency of liquid fuels on wetted surfaces”.

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AVIA supports research at OWI

Sponsorship of the “Future Fuels Research Cluster”

The investigation of the chemical-physical properties of new and conventional fuels is part of the OWI research portfolio. Photo: OWI

5 June 2018 – AVIA AG has been supporting the research and development activities of OWI Oel-Waerme-Institut gGmbH in the field of future fuels since April 2018. AVIA and OWI have signed a sponsorship agreement to support the “OWI Research Cluster Future Fuels”. According to the current status, this comprises 13 individual projects for the years 2016 to 2020 with a total project volume of around 6.3 million euros.

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