ORLEN collaborates with Yokogawa for SAF technology
Photo courtesy of ORLEN

ORLEN collaborates with Yokogawa for SAF technology

ORLEN and Yokogawa Europe, a key division of Japan’s Yokogawa Electric Corporation, have announced a partnership to pioneer the large-scale production of carbon-neutral synthetic aviation fuels. On September 21, 2023, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed, marking the companies’ commitment to refining the technology that synthesises fuel from carbon dioxide and green hydrogen. ORLEN aims to lead in this nascent market, targeting the decarbonisation of the aviation sector.

Synthetic fuels are pivotal for the aviation industry’s carbon neutrality goals, offering an alternative to fossil fuels. ORLEN’s ambition is to produce 70,000 metric tons of these fuels annually by 2030.

“Our alliance with Yokogawa is a significant step toward our synthetic fuel production objectives. We’ve had a successful history with our Japanese counterpart in refining and petrochemical optimisation. Their expertise will be invaluable in advancing ORLEN’s new business direction,” said Daniel Obajtek, CEO of ORLEN.

The collaboration’s objective is to devise an integrated management solution for synthetic fuel production. This includes creating a ‘digital twin’โ€”a virtual model of the production facilityโ€”to simulate and optimise production processes. The focus is on identifying the most cost-effective and eco-friendly synthesis method. This technology will be implemented in a new synthetic fuels production facility, slated for completion by 2030.

Synthetic fuels are produced by merging hydrogen, derived from renewable energy-powered electrolysis, with carbon dioxide from various industrial sources. This method can substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions. These fuels closely resemble traditional petroleum products, such as gasoline and jet fuel, but with a reduced carbon footprint. Their compatibility with existing infrastructure and vehicles makes them a promising solution for sectors like aviation.

Takayuki Matsubara, president of Yokogawa Europe, remarked, “Our joint venture with ORLEN will fast-track the decarbonisation of aviation fuels through integrated digital systems.”

Yokogawa has a history of offering a wide range of solutions to the ORLEN Group, including automation technology and energy optimisation tools.

ORLEN, a major Polish oil refining and petrol retailing company headquartered in Pล‚ock, operates in 10 countries, including Poland, Czech Republic, Germany, and Canada. By 2030, ORLEN plans to invest significantly in green ventures, such as wind energy, biofuels, and synthetic fuels.