Audi has successfully managed to create synthetic diesel fuel using water and CO2.

The fuel, dubbed Audi E-diesel is created by combining CO2 with water that has been broken down to into its constituent hydrogen and oxygen molecules through high-temperature electrolysis. The resultant product is known as blue crude, from which the E-diesel can be extracted in a similar manner to conventional crude oil.

The E-diesel used can be mixed with regular diesel or used to fuel combustion engines in its own right.

“This synthetic diesel, made using CO2, is a huge success for our sustainability research. If we can make widespread use of CO2 as a raw material, we will make a crucial contribution to climate protection and the efficient use of resources, and put the fundamentals of the ‘green economy’ in place,” said Prof Dr Johanna Wanka, Germany’s minister of education and research.

Provided the energy used in the process is generated from renewable sources, the new fuel could provide a step forward towards sustainable mobility.

To prove its viability for use in automobiles, Prof Wanka used the first five litres of E-diesel produced in her Audi A8 3.0-litre TDI.

Audi’s Dresden fuel facility opened in November last year and is set to produce more than 3,000 litres of E-diesel over the coming months.

Do you think synthetic fuel is the future of sustainable mobility? Would you consider e-fuels over an electric car? Let us know in the comments section below.

Daljinder Nagra


April 22, 2015