Synhelion researches and develops new technologies to manufacture synthetic gas using CO2 from the air and sunlight. This can be further processed into fuel that can be burned in conventional engines. Since CO2 is removed from the air during manufacture, Synhelion’s fuel is free from emissions unlike fossil fuels.
Synhelion is now collaborating with Zurich Airport according to a press release. The spin-off from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETH) wants to build a test facility. Through test operation from 2023, synthetic fuel should be produced there. Zurich Airport will buy all available yearly quantities of the sustainable fuel produced at the test facility at cost. Prices will be significantly above that of fossil fuel in the test phase.
The airport hopes to use the sustainable fuel in its vehicles and machines, bringing it closer to its aim of reducing its CO2 emissions to net zero by 2050. It is also supporting Synhelion’s activities and thereby contributing to making synthetic fuel available at greater quantities and at lower prices in the near future.
Synhelion’s technology is also of interest for the aviation sector in replacing the conventional kerosene used for aircraft. The German airline Lufthansa entered into a partnership with Synhelion and Climeworks – another ETH spin-off – in mid-May. the aim of the collaboration is to accelerate the development and market launch of sustainable aircraft fuels.