Companies from the fossil fuel industry, chemicals as well as transportation face massive challenges to decarbonize their business. Aviation is responsible for about 2.4% of the world’s CO2 emissions and 3.5% of human-induced climate change when other greenhouse gases and contrails are accounted for. Roland Berger forecasts that if other industries decarbonise in line with current projections, aviation could account for up to 24% of global emissions by 2050 unless there is a significant technological shift.
INERATEC, a spin-off company from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), develops, builds, and delivers chemical plants equipped with innovative chemical reactor technology for Gas-to-Liquid, Power-to-Liquid, and Power-to-Gas applications.
INERATEC’s technology and know-how are based on compact and microstructured chemical reactors for decentralized and demanding applications, such as Fischer-Tropsch synthesis, Methanol synthesis, methanation, and synthesis gas generation via catalytic partial oxidation and reverse water gas shift.
INERATEC plans an industrial pioneer plant for the production of sustainable synthetic fuels starting in 2022. Up to 3,500 tons or 4.6 million liters of INERATEC e-Fuels can be produced annually from up to 10,000 tons of biogenic CO2 and renewable electricity. The pioneer plant will be the largest one so far and will serve as an enabler for further worldwide power-to-liquid projects of INERATEC.
Why we invested
- Ineratec´s technology solves several challenges of the energy transition: management of a fluctuating supply of renewable energy, large and long-term energy storage as well as sustainable mobility and climate neutrality.
- Ineratec operates in an environment that experiences strong regulatory and political tailwinds. The EU Renewable Energy Directive (RED II) requires a minium of 14% of the energy consumed in road and rail transport by 2030 to come from renewable energies. Member states like Germany prescribe a fixed quota for blended kerosene. These progressive regulations will massively advance industrial-scale production.
- In line with this evolving regulatory framework the market for Ineratec is growing massively: A study by the World Energy Council shows that global demand for synthetic fuels can easily rise up to 20,000 TWh in the long term (by 2050 and beyond), including all Power-to-X technologies. This corresponds to around 50% of today’s global demand for crude oil.
- With Ineratec we consciously invest in hardware as a way to tackle climate mitigation. Electricity-based fuels need to find their pathway from laboratory to industrial production as quickly as possible. By investing in Ineratec we directly support this transition.
Science-based impact assessment
Ineratec generates significant impact in key environmental categories important to Planet A, in this case climate mitigation and resource savings. E-products are a viable option for the decarbonization of hard to decarbonize industries currently depending on fossil resources. They also are a suitable replacement in areas of the transport sector in which the direct use of electricity is unlikely to be technically feasible even in the future — for example aviation and long-distance shipping. Life cycle assessments of PtX technologies demonstrate these positive effects.
Next Economy Award
DT4G Award Stuttgart ’18