Press Release

Mitsubishi Power to Participate in a Joint Study for the Establishment of a Commercial-scale SAF Production Technology and the Creation of a Supply Chain
-- Entrained Bed Gasification Technology will Contribute to Decarbonization in Aviation Industry --

· NEDO-supported project - in consortium with JERA, TOYO and ITOCHU - looks to promote widespread use of SAF
· Target on commercial-scale demonstration of entrained bed gasification technology suitable for liquefied fuel synthesis

YOKOHAMA, JAPAN (August 19, 2021) - Mitsubishi Power, a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group, is embarking on a project to develop a commercial-scale supply chain for sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) derived by wood biomass gasification integrated with FT synthesis technology(Note1). The project will be carried out jointly with JERA Co., Inc., Toyo Engineering Corporation (TOYO), and ITOCHU Corporation.

The project has been selected by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) following its call for participation in its “Biojet Fuel Production Technology Development Project”, which also targets construction of a demonstration supply chain model. The four consortium partners will jointly study the conditions, measures and technical issues necessary to achieve early supply of wood biomass-derived aviation fuel, to support future SAF supplies in the domestic market. The entire project period is about 4 years from FY2021 to FY2024. The consortium will conduct a feasibility study for approximately 2 years from FY2021. Then it will move on preparation phase for a demonstration plant and the establishment for supply chain after evaluating the result of the feasibility study.

Mitsubishi Power, JERA and TOYO have already demonstrated continuous SAF production by gasification FT synthesis on a pilot scale under a NEDO-commissioned project(Note2). carried out from FY2017 through FY2021, and the produced SAF was supplied for use on a Japan Airlines commercial flight on June 17, 2021. Going forward, the knowledge accumulated in the demonstration project will be applied toward establishing the entire supply chain, including feedstock procurement, production technology and product supply.

Main roles of the consortium members

Mitsubishi Power, Ltd. Basic design of commercial-scale gasification facilities
JERA Co., Inc. Study of commercial-scale applications, applicable laws and regulations, feedstock procurement, methods for mixing neat SAF and petroleum-derived jet fuels, SAF market research, business feasibility
Toyo Engineering Corporation Basic design of commercial-scale FT synthesis (including distillation) facilities
ITOCHU Corporation Research into (i) supply logistic of SAF and by-products, and (ii) by-product markets

Mitsubishi Power has technologies and expertise in coal and biomass gasification accumulated since the 1980s. Applying these assets, the Company has already demonstrated its ability to utilize normobaric oxygen / steam-blown entrained bed gasification - the core technology in the pilot-plant demonstration phase - to stably and efficiently supply gas ideally suited for liquefied fuel synthesis on a long-term basis. Moreover, because the gasification furnace features a simple structure, expansion to commercial scale can be achieved easily.

Going forward, Mitsubishi Power will continue working closely with its three consortium partners toward demonstration of biojet fuel production technology and the establishment of a supply chain model. By achieving reduction in greenhouse gas emissions caused by jet fuels, the Company will contribute to mitigating the aviation industry's impact on the global environment.

  • 1Gasification and FT (Fischer-Tropsch) synthesis technology: a technology whereby solid materials such as wood cellulose are reacted with water vapor and a small amount of oxygen in a gasifier to produce carbon monoxide and hydrogen (gasification), which are then synthesized into liquid hydrocarbons (fuel) in an FT reactor using a catalyst (Fischer-Tropsch Process).
  • 2Project summary: