Germany-based automaker Porsche has announced that it will invest a massive amount of 24 million USD in line with its initiative to produce and develop "e-fuels", which could then replace regular gasoline on nonelectric vehicles.
The investment announcement included that Porsche will be partnering up with Siemens Energy AG - a fellow German conglomerate company, the largest industrial manufacturing company in Europe.
The projected fuel plant could potentially be the world's first industrial-scale plant to utilize carbon-neutral synthetic fuel produced from green hydrogen. It is targeted to be housed in the Western part of Chile, wherein it is known for its production and frequent incorporation of strong wind energy.
Aside from the two German companies, other companies are also yet to be involved with the upcoming project. It includes the AME energy firm based in Shenzhen, China, and the petroleum company ENAP from the country of the power plant's target location Chile.
Porsche would be, of course, the primary custom and user of the currently developing e-fuels. They could possibly use it for their car models and units, which are more inclined to motorsports, as well as their show car units that are being tested on their experience and testing centers around the world.
How E-Fuels Work
Some benefits of using e-fuels include a more environment-friendly performance of cars consuming it. Producing it involves winning energy to power up the electrolyzer, which can then split water into its two main components — hydrogen and oxygen.
The carbon dioxide would then be filtered out within the air present through the hydrogen extracted from the water, which can be used to create synthetic methanol. The methanol produced could be converted to gasoline with the supervision of Exxon Mobil, the world-renowned gasoline corporation from Texas, USA.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Porsche, Oliver Blume, stated in an interview that electro-mobility is considered one of the top priorities of their company. He added the e-fuels for cars could be somehow a "worthwhile complement to that," in which it is produced in several parts of the world where "a surplus of sustainable energy is available."
The plan for the project includes a timeline of desired outputs and outcomes upon developing the fuel plant. Its initial pilot production phase is expected to produce an amount of 130,000 liters of e-fuel. It equivalents to over 34,000 gallons and is projected to be executed as early as the year 2022.
Succeeding phases target an amount of 55 million liters by the year 2024 or as much as over 14.5 million gallons of e-fuel already in a span of four years from now, and 550 million liters or 145 million gallons by the year 2026.
As the trend for electronic vehicles (EV) continue to rise, Porsche could also pave the way for this more environment friendly to somewhat co-exist with the EV industry. This could embark for other automakers' start to develop the likes of these advancements.