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Title: Well-to-wake analysis of ethanol-to-jet and sugar-to-jet pathways

Abstract

Background: To reduce the environmental impacts of the aviation sector as air traffic grows steadily, the aviation industry has paid increasing attention to bio-based alternative jet fuels (AJFs), which may provide lower life-cycle petroleum consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than petroleum jet fuel. This study presents well-to-wake (WTWa) results for four emerging AJFs: ethanol-to-jet (ETJ) from corn and corn stover, and sugar-to-jet (STJ) from corn stover via both biological and catalytic conversion. For the ETJ pathways, two plant designs were examined: integrated (processing corn or corn stover as feedstock) and distributed (processing ethanol as feedstock). Also, three H-2 options for STJ via catalytic conversion are investigated: external H-2 from natural gas (NG) steam methane reforming (SMR), in situ H-2, and H-2 from biomass gasification. Results: Results demonstrate that the feedstock is a key factor in the WTWa GHG emissions of ETJ: corn-and corn stover-based ETJ are estimated to produce WTWa GHG emissions that are 16 and 73%, respectively, less than those of petroleum jet. As for the STJ pathways, this study shows that STJ via biological conversion could generate WTWa GHG emissions 59% below those of petroleum jet. STJ via catalytic conversion could reduce the WTWa GHG emissions bymore » 28% with H-2 from NG SMR or 71% with H-2 from biomass gasification than those of petroleum jet. This study also examines the impacts of co-product handling methods, and shows that the WTWa GHG emissions of corn stover-based ETJ, when estimated with a displacement method, are lower by 11 g CO(2)e/MJ than those estimated with an energy allocation method. Conclusion: Corn-and corn stover-based ETJ as well as corn stover-based STJ show potentials to reduce WTWa GHG emissions compared to petroleum jet. Particularly, WTWa GHG emissions of STJ via catalytic conversion depend highly on the hydrogen source. On the other hand, ETJ offers unique opportunities to exploit extensive existing corn ethanol plants and infrastructure, and to provide a boost to staggering ethanol demand, which is largely being used as gasoline blendstock.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
OSTI Identifier:
1618666
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1343401; OSTI ID: 1373566
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-5100-67911
Journal ID: ISSN 1754-6834; 21; PII: 698
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC02-06CH11357; AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Published Article
Journal Name:
Biotechnology for Biofuels
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Biotechnology for Biofuels Journal Volume: 10 Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 1754-6834
Publisher:
Springer Science + Business Media
Country of Publication:
Netherlands
Language:
English
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS; life-cycle analysis; well-to-wake analysis; ethanol-to-jet; sugar-to-jet; greenhouse gas emissions; fossil fuel use; water consumption

Citation Formats

Han, Jeongwoo, Tao, Ling, and Wang, Michael. Well-to-wake analysis of ethanol-to-jet and sugar-to-jet pathways. Netherlands: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1186/s13068-017-0698-z.
Han, Jeongwoo, Tao, Ling, & Wang, Michael. Well-to-wake analysis of ethanol-to-jet and sugar-to-jet pathways. Netherlands. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13068-017-0698-z
Han, Jeongwoo, Tao, Ling, and Wang, Michael. 2017. "Well-to-wake analysis of ethanol-to-jet and sugar-to-jet pathways". Netherlands. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13068-017-0698-z.
@article{osti_1618666,
title = {Well-to-wake analysis of ethanol-to-jet and sugar-to-jet pathways},
author = {Han, Jeongwoo and Tao, Ling and Wang, Michael},
abstractNote = {Background: To reduce the environmental impacts of the aviation sector as air traffic grows steadily, the aviation industry has paid increasing attention to bio-based alternative jet fuels (AJFs), which may provide lower life-cycle petroleum consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than petroleum jet fuel. This study presents well-to-wake (WTWa) results for four emerging AJFs: ethanol-to-jet (ETJ) from corn and corn stover, and sugar-to-jet (STJ) from corn stover via both biological and catalytic conversion. For the ETJ pathways, two plant designs were examined: integrated (processing corn or corn stover as feedstock) and distributed (processing ethanol as feedstock). Also, three H-2 options for STJ via catalytic conversion are investigated: external H-2 from natural gas (NG) steam methane reforming (SMR), in situ H-2, and H-2 from biomass gasification. Results: Results demonstrate that the feedstock is a key factor in the WTWa GHG emissions of ETJ: corn-and corn stover-based ETJ are estimated to produce WTWa GHG emissions that are 16 and 73%, respectively, less than those of petroleum jet. As for the STJ pathways, this study shows that STJ via biological conversion could generate WTWa GHG emissions 59% below those of petroleum jet. STJ via catalytic conversion could reduce the WTWa GHG emissions by 28% with H-2 from NG SMR or 71% with H-2 from biomass gasification than those of petroleum jet. This study also examines the impacts of co-product handling methods, and shows that the WTWa GHG emissions of corn stover-based ETJ, when estimated with a displacement method, are lower by 11 g CO(2)e/MJ than those estimated with an energy allocation method. Conclusion: Corn-and corn stover-based ETJ as well as corn stover-based STJ show potentials to reduce WTWa GHG emissions compared to petroleum jet. Particularly, WTWa GHG emissions of STJ via catalytic conversion depend highly on the hydrogen source. On the other hand, ETJ offers unique opportunities to exploit extensive existing corn ethanol plants and infrastructure, and to provide a boost to staggering ethanol demand, which is largely being used as gasoline blendstock.},
doi = {10.1186/s13068-017-0698-z},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/1618666}, journal = {Biotechnology for Biofuels},
issn = {1754-6834},
number = 1,
volume = 10,
place = {Netherlands},
year = {2017},
month = {1}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record at https://doi.org/10.1186/s13068-017-0698-z

Figures / Tables:

Table 1 Table 1: WTWa GHG emissions of  STJs and  ATJs from  previous studies (numbers in  the parenthesis indicates estimated ranges)

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Works referenced in this record:

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journal, November 2010


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Works referencing / citing this record:

The Alcohol-to-Jet Conversion Pathway for Drop-In Biofuels: Techno-Economic Evaluation
journal, November 2018