(610c) Conversion of Bio-Derived Ethanol to Jet Fuel Range Hydrocarbon
Development of technically feasible and economically attractive conversion technologies to produce jet fuel from a wide range of biomass-derived oxygenate feedstock to satisfy the U.S. aviation fuel needs, to achieve energy independence from foreign oil, and to make a positive impact on the carbon foot print is one of the greatest interest in the research community. Energy for the automobile industry can possibly be replaced by the electron source with an improved battery technology. But for heavy transportation and aviation, liquid fuel will be the only viable source in the foreseeable future. Total jet fuel consumption in the USA alone for the year 2010 is around 20.5 billion gallon. DoD (Air Force) plans to switch half of its jet fuel requirement (around 2.4 billion gallons) to renewable fuels by 2016. This sector can potentially be replaced by biofuels, especially due to the effort required by the Energy Independence and Security Act to produce 36 billion gallon/year biofuels by 2022. The production of hydrocarbon fuels/jet fuels from ethanol has attracted much attention in recent years, since ethanol is projected to be largely available from cellulose (biomass). At present all the aviation fuel is derived from fossil sources. Due to the high interest level of the renewable fuel resources, currently there are lots of research work going on in developing a process to produce jet fuel from various feed sources such as natural oil and algae. Jet fuel requires roughly 40wt% of aromatic and cyclic content along with approximately 60wt% of C8 to C16 paraffinic hydrocarbon due to stringent specifications such as low freezing point, high flash point and high volumetric density. In addition to the unfavorable cost, the above mentioned natural oil and algae processes only produce the paraffinic content of the jet fuel and depends on other resources for its aromatic content. In this talk the experimental results from the conversion of bio-derived ethanol to produce full performance jet fuel from one source will be discussed.