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Scientist working in Sunbird Bioenergy’s Renewable Fuel Innovation Laboratory

Innovation

We commercialise clean technology that displaces fossil fuels and reduces carbon dioxide emissions. 

Bioethanol

Bioethanol is mainly produced by the sugar fermentation and distillation process and is a petrol substitute for road transport. Usually blended with fuel as E5, E10 & E85. 

Biodiesel

Biodiesel is derived from vegetable oils or tallow and is a diesel substitute for road transport. Usually blended with fuel as B5, B20 & B100.

Biomethane

Biomethane is a renewable gas obtained from the anaerobic digestion of organic materials such as sewage. It is used in gas turbines to produce low-carbon power.

Hydrogen

Hydrogen produced from renewable energy or 'green hydrogen' is an alternative fuel for heavy goods vehicles and other fuel-cell-powered transportation. 

Ammonia

Green ammonia is used in the production of carbon-neutral fertiliser products that decarbonise the food value chain. It is also an efficient carrier of hydrogen for export and a potential maritime fuel.

SAF

Sustainable Aviation Fuel is a renewable fuel produced from waste cooking oil and animal waste fat or the gasification of solid municipal waste. It is blended with aviation fuel. 

Biomethanol

Biomethanol is  a potential low-carbon maritime transportation fuel produced from the gasification of biomass or synthesis of carbon dioxide and hydrogen. 

Renewable Fuels

Tanker distributing bioethanol and renewable fuel in Africa

Many innovative technologies will be required to decarbonise the transportation sector. 

Initially, low-carbon biofuels or 'drop-in fuels' will be blended with fossil fuels to lower their carbon intensity. 

 

Over time, the energy mix will likely migrate to electrification for urban vehicles, and low-carbon fuels such as hydrogen, methanol, ammonia and SAF for commercial vehicles, maritime vessels and aviation.  

We have a vision and development roadmap to commercialise these technologies and integrate them within our operations.

Carbon Negative Technology

Carbon Negative Icon for BECCS and SPEG Processes

The bioenergy industry has the potential to become carbon negative – we are working on biorefinery designs that can remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than we add to it.

Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) is seen as one of the most viable and cost-effective negative emissions technologies. Carbon dioxide (CO2) gas is captured from the exhaust gases of a bioenergy process and compressed into a liquid. Liquified carbon dioxide (CO2) is pumped into suitable underground geological storage sites where it classifies over time.  

Global innovation also includes the production of carbon-negative hydrogen from biomass and other waste products using the Solena Plasma Enhanced Gasification (SPEG) process. This and other technology innovations offer an affordable pathway to mass-produced green hydrogen.

Bioplastic

Biodegradable bioplastic bag made from cassava

We are working to include bioplastics in our bioenergy value chain to produce 'green packaging'. This will displace fossil fuels from their manufacturing process and both decarbonises the packaging industry and reduce pollution from waste plastic.

Polylactic acid or PLA It is the primary component of biodegradable or compostable plastic and can be made from any sugar or starch such as sugarcane or cassava. 

Biopolyethylene (also known as renewable polyethylene) is made out of ethanol, which becomes ethylene after a dehydration process. It can be made from various feedstocks, including sugarcane and cassava.