The United States Air Force (USAF) is partnering with carbon transformation company Twelve and aims to develop and implement technology to produce jet fuel from the air.
According to a press release from USAF Material Command, the technology has already been tested, and found to be both deployable and scalable.
Twelve was endorsed by the USAF in 2020. In August 2021, the company conducted a successful experiment in producing jet fuel from carbon dioxide (CO2), a result that USAF called “a milestone”.
According to the service, such a process would not only result in a decreased environmental footprint, but it would also remove the need to extract, transport and store fuel, eliminating the risk and cost associated with such operations.
“With carbon transformation, we are untethering aviation from petroleum supply chains. The Air Force has been a strong partner in our work to advance innovative new sources of aviation fuel,” Nicholas Flanders, co-founder and CEO of Twelve, stated in the press release.
Twelve’s process involves capturing CO2 from the air using only water and renewable power. The extracted fuel, which the company calls E-Jet, can be used in a 50/50 blend with regular petroleum.
Currently, the first phase of the program, which is aimed at developing the technology, is under way. According to the USAF, the second phase will involve scaling the technology.