Hydrogen, HVO and FAME
The future fuel landscape is incredibly broad. It comprises many different fuel types, a range of applications and a more efficient use of by-products from other industrial processes.
When considering viability within the energy sector, there are several key variables which must be taken into consideration such as power density, availability and landed costs.
Drop-in fuels are one option, which are completely interchangeable substitutes for conventional petroleum-derived hydrocarbons, meaning there is no requirement to adapt the engine, fuel system or the fuel distribution network.
Others run only in specifically modified engines or require an entirely different technology. For some, an entirely new infrastructure is needed, that is yet to be built. Geography also plays an important role, as some fuels or technologies are only available in specific locations.
All of these factors ultimately influence whether a fuel is deemed commercially viable, as they all have a bearing on the overall cost of a fuel to the end user and the impact of its deployment on the overall cost of electricity generation.
In order to achieve this viability for new fuel sources, the market price of alternative fuels must drop, they must be able to compete with current fossil variants. In addition, the fuels need to be made widely available, which requires the appropriate infrastructure and generation facilities.
When it comes to decarbonisation in the temporary and off-grid sectors, no single fuel will be a 'silver bullet.' It's about getting the right balance of fuels and technologies, carefully tailored to specific locations, sectors and customer sites.