Staying ahead of the technology curve means strengthening your competitive advantage. That is why we give you data-driven innovation insights into the energy industry. This time, you get to discover 5 hand-picked startups creating low-carbon fuels.
Global Startup Heat Map highlights 5 Top Low-Carbon Fuel Solutions out of 241
The insights of this data-driven analysis are derived from the Big Data & Artificial Intelligence-powered StartUs Insights Discovery Platform, covering 2.093.000+ startups & scaleups globally. The platform gives you an exhaustive overview of emerging technologies & relevant startups within a specific field in just a few clicks.
The Global Startup Heat Map below reveals the distribution of the 241 exemplary startups & scaleups we analyzed for this research. Further, it highlights 5 energy startups that we hand-picked based on criteria such as founding year, location, funding raised, and more. You get to explore the solutions of these 5 startups & scaleups in this report. For insights on the other 236 low-carbon fuels, get in touch.
BayoTech offers On-Site Hydrogen Production Solutions
Hydrogen is a renewable and highly abundant element in the universe. At the time of producing hydrogen, the process only emits water as a by-product. This makes it an important alternative to fossil fuels to combat climate change. However, conventional methods of hydrogen extraction, storage, and transportation are energy-intensive and leave a large carbon footprint. That is why startups develop technologies to minimize carbon intensity during hydrogen production.
BayoTech is a US-based startup that provides custom on-site hydrogen production solutions. Bayo Tech uses a steam methane reformer (SMR) and is currently developing systems capable of producing 5.000 kg, 10.000 kg, and 30.000 kg of hydrogen per day. The nested flow design of the SMR utilizes heat more efficiently, in turn, reducing the carbon intensity. BayoTech also works on a Hydrogen-as-a-Service model by providing the agricultural, energy, and chemical industries with clean hydrogen at low costs.
Opus-12 captures Carbon Dioxide (CO2) to Produce Low-Carbon Fuels
Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technologies curb the level of CO2 in the atmosphere. However, CCS brings new challenges for finding adequate and safe storage locations, which further degrades the environment. Therefore, to address this challenge, startups & scaleups create methods to convert this captured carbon into chemicals and fuels. Further still, the energy utilized for this conversion requires renewable sources to make the whole process carbon neutral.
US-based startup Opus-12 builds technology to convert waste CO2 into fuel, in turn, enabling further reduction in industrial emissions. Opus-12’s electrochemical process combines CO2, water, and electricity in the presence of a catalyst to produce higher-energy carbon products. Using their technology, the startup considerably increases the yield of methane, when compared to existing processes. Methane is a low-carbon alternative for natural gas that is already in use for heating and other industrial applications. The startup’s process also produces syngas which is useful in the production of diesel and jet fuel.
Renovare Fuels turns Waste into Liquid Fuel
Biogas plants are a viable solution for utilizing biodegradable waste from farms and households. But in most cases, the biogas mixture is mostly composed of CO2, which reduces its energy density. Following this, the hydrocarbon concentration of the mixture needs to increase to meet industrial standards. Purifying biogas into a hydrocarbon mixture, or into liquid fuel, is a very energy-intensive process. So startups are focusing on innovations in process technologies to reduce the carbon intensity of biogas purification.
Renovare Fuels is a British startup that develops a patented low-carbon solution to convert waste into industrial-grade fuel. The conversion unit allows tuning of the process parameters to produce either diesel or Jet A1. The startup’s unit processes biogas from various sources, irrespective of the mixture composition. A key aspect of the technology is that it efficiently recycles both mass and heat flow. Recycling waste heat streams later produces surplus energy that is sufficient to power various auxiliary electrical equipment, in addition to selling to the grid. As a result, farms, municipalities, and industrial establishments are able to reduce their costs and carbon footprint with low-carbon liquid fuels.
C-Zero reduces the Carbon Footprint of Natural Gas
Like all fossil fuels, natural gas is a mixture of hydrocarbons. And so, the combustion of natural gas returns water and CO2 as byproducts. In fact, most of the energy from natural gas combustion attributes to hydrogen and produces only water as a byproduct. Conventional pyrolysis technologies to extract hydrogen are typically energy-intensive and produce CO2 as a byproduct. Startups are developing new pyrolysis techniques that require low energy inputs and also reduces carbon emissions.
C-Zero is a US-based startup that uses methane pyrolysis technology to decarbonize natural gas. The technology uses an innovative thermo-catalysis process to extract the carbon in natural gas as a dense solid. Extracting carbon in solid form reduces carbon dioxide emissions. Thereby, C-Zero’s technology decarbonizes an array of processes including electricity generation, process heating, ammonia synthesis, and refining. The startup’s drop-in decarbonization system for existing natural gas infrastructure further enables consumers to lower their carbon footprint.
Airthium builds Renewable Energy Backup Systems
Renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind, are seasonal, which mandates the availability of fossil-fired power plants as a backup. Moreover, the battery technology that is available today does not have the energy density to replace fossil fuels and is also highly energy-intensive. Thus, startups aim to develop energy reservoirs that emulate the characteristics of fossil fuels while lowering the carbon footprint of renewable energy.
French startup Airthium works on technology to create a dependable backup for solar and wind energy grids. The system uses ammonia as zero-carbon synthetic fuel and the storage system is mostly made of renewable liquid ammonia, molten nitrate salt, water, and steel. Then, a high-efficiency and low-cost Stirling Engine converts the energy back into electricity. This makes solar and wind energy sources practical and helps in reducing the carbon footprint of renewable energy production.
Discover more Energy Startups
Energy startups, such as the 5 examples highlighted in this report, focus on energy process technologies, decentralization, decarbonization as well as renewables. While all of these technologies play a major role in advancing the energy industry, they only represent the tip of the iceberg. To explore more renewable energy technologies, simply get in touch to let us look into your areas of interest. For a more general overview, you can download our free Energy Innovation Report to save your time and improve strategic decision-making.