Smarter refueling with green methanol
energy concepts | innovation | mobility of the future | Smart energy | Sustainability and climate protection | thyssenkrupp is taking a big step toward climate neutrality with the production of green methanol. The required power comes from renewables – and CO2 is recycled intelligently.
Whether it’s climate change, the resultant need for the transition to renewables or increasing traffic in booming metropolises – the world and our global society are currently facing perhaps the most complex and biggest existential challenges in their history. To ensure a future worth living in we need to come up with new, unconventional and above all green ideas. One of the most promising approaches for generating sustainable energy is green methanol.
thyssenkrupp is combining two technological highlights to achieve this: The company has developed both the water electrolysis technology and the methanol production process in-house, collaborating closely with the company Swiss Liquid Future.
The electrolysis technology for hydrogen, which is indispensable for the production of methanol, is a proprietary development of thyssenkrupp – using sustainably produced energy from renewable sources.
Turning CO2 into fuel
thyssenkrupp’s synthesis process mitigates global climate change thanks to the sustainable way in which the energy for the technology is generated: thyssenkrupp collects the CO2 from industrial emissions while the required power for the proprietary hydrogen electrolysis process comes from renewable sources such as geothermal energy, hydropower or wind energy, making the dream of a carbon cycle so longed for by many researchers a reality.
But green methanol is not just eco-friendly – it also offers great advantages for our everyday lives as it can be used for example to store energy or power vehicles. Drivers can add the green fuel to normal gasoline or even just pour it straight into the tank, as specially modified drive systems that run on 100% methanol are already available.
Perfect for the energy transition
Use of the green methanol technology offers the greatest opportunities in countries where there is a legal framework for the use of renewables such as in Iceland, Norway or Switzerland. Iceland has vast supplies of geothermal energy, while Norway has huge hydropower resources. And on some days Germany already produces more electricity from renewable sources than it needs. However, the volatility of supply needs to be kept under constant observation. After all on some days there is no wind and the sun does not shine at night.
The manufacturing process at a glance: While the energy for hydrogen electrolysis is generated via geothermal energy, hydropower or wind energy, the CO2 comes from industrial emissions. In the end, small modular plants produce green methanol from hydrogen and CO2 – an ideal energy storage or fuel for cars, trucks and ships.
Plant operators can produce 100 to 200 tons of green methanol per day with modular small-scale plants. thyssenkrupp offers one-stop-shop solutions from engineering, procurement and construction to service.
Methanol – motor for a sustainable future
Experts predict that Germany will face a significant oversupply of electricity from renewable sources in the future. The German government has decided to create a CO2-neutral transport sector by 2050. thyssenkrupp’s green methanol produced from renewable sources can play a key role here.