Arcadis wins bio jet fuel project

By Steve Skinner15 February 2010

Arcadis has won the principle consultancy role for the design, construction and delivery of a UK£ 250 million (€ 288 million) sustainable jet fuel facility in London, UK - the first of its kind in Europe.

Awarded the contract by Solena Group in partnership with British Airways, Arcadis will manage the site selection process for the self-contained facility and oversee construction to ensure it is completed on time for the first deliveries of biojet fuel in 2014.

Managing director of Arcadis in the UK, Stephen Didcott told CE, "We have five sites around London shortlisted, but until a final decision is made about which one to develop we won't know the full value of the project, although it will be between UK£ 200 million (€ 230 million) and UK£ 250 million (€ 288 million)," he confirmed.

US-based Solena Group is the developer and owner of biojet fuel technology and has formed a partnership with British Airways for this project. The fuel is produced from plasma gasification of biomass into BioSynGas, which is then converted by the Fischer Tropsch catalysed chemical reaction into biojet fuel.

The 8,1 hectare facility in London will be capable of processing all types of biomass and residue feedstock, which will be obtained from local waste management facilities. The process produces no waste products other than an environmentally-benign slag that can be used as aggregate for construction.

CEO of Solena Group, Robert Do said, "We are teaming up with Arcadis on a global basis as they have the skills and people locally to deliver just what we need."

When operational in 2014 the facility will convert 500000 tonnes of carbon-based material into 72,7 million litres of jet fuel, and offer lifecycle greenhouse gas savings of up to 95% when compared to Kerosene.

"Projects like this demonstrate that the technology is viable and the end results are extremely desirable," said Mr Didcott. "We at Arcadis are proud to be a part of this important development."

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