MIAMI – Shell invests in LanzaJet to accelerate the global commercialization of its Alcohol-to-Jet (AtJ) technology to help decarbonize aviation.

Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) is fundamental to aviation’s progress towards net-zero emissions. LanzaJet assures its technology provides a ready, scalable, and unique solution that focuses on SAF production today and for tomorrow.

Shell’s investment further enables LanzaJet’s global growth and aligns with Shell’s strategy to become a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050.

Shell joins other LanzaJet investors including LanzaTech, Suncor Energy Inc., Mitsui & Co., Ltd., and British Airways (BA), along with participation in LanzaJet by All Nippon Airways (AN).

With such investment, LanzaJet looks to build the first AtJ facility of its kind globally: a commercial-scale plant called Freedom Pines Fuels, in Soperton, Georgia, US, with operation set to produce 10 million gallons per year beginning in 2022. 

Landing of the world’s first LanzaJet-fueled CCU transatlantic flight with Virgin Atlantic. Photo: LanzaJet

The Companies

LanzaJet is a sustainable fuels technology company and sustainable fuel producer. With the help of the aforementioned investors, LanzaJet states in a press release that it aims for global growth in the commercialization of its technology, and the scale the production of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).

LanzaJet was launched in June 2020 following nearly a decade of technology development and commercial scale-up through a partnership by LanzaJet’s founder, LanzaTech, with the U.S Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). The LanzaJet process can use any source of sustainable ethanol for jet fuel production, including, but not limited to, ethanol made from recycled pollution, the core application of LanzaTech’s carbon recycling platform.

On its part, Shell will have the opportunity to make further investments in the construction of large-scale production facilities over the coming years. As per the LAnzaJet’s press release, “With the right policies to support the uptake and production of SAF, aviation can achieve net-zero emissions.”

Image: LanzaJet

The Technology

LanzaJet’s technology is uniquely able to produce up to 90% of its fuels as SAF, with the remaining 10% as renewable diesel. The SAF will be blended with conventional fossil jet fuel and be supplied to airports through the existing supply routes. The technology can flex to produce more diesel and less SAF, as desired.

LanzaJet’s SAF is approved to be blended up to 50% with fossil jet fuel, the maximum allowed by ASTM, and is a drop-in fuel that requires no modifications to engines, aircraft, and infrastructure. Additionally, LanzaJet’s SAF delivers more than a 70% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions on a lifecycle basis, compared to conventional fossil jet fuel.

The versatility in ethanol, and a focus on low-carbon, waste-based, and non-food /non-feed sources, along with ethanol’s global availability, make LanzaJet’s technology a relevant and enduring solution for SAF.

Featured image: Fueling the world’s first LanzaJet-fueled CCU transpacific flight with ANA. Photo: LanzaJet