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December 15, 2023

Metafuels Soars High with $8 Million for Game-Changing Sustainable Jet Fuel

Not from a high-stakes poker game, but straight off baggage carousel 3 at ZRH, our friendly neighborhood Zurich airport

In a scene reminiscent of a high-stakes thriller, Metafuels recently grabbed an $8 million jackpot, not from a clandestine meeting but from carousel 3 at Zurich's ZRH airport. This Swiss startup is not dealing in traditional currencies but in a groundbreaking venture that could revolutionize aviation. Enter aerobrew, the green elixir propelling Metafuels' mission to make the skies ecologically pristine, one flight at a time. Forget French presses and boomerangs; Metafuels has concocted a sustainable aviation fuel (eSAF), using renewable electricity, aiming to change the landscape of sustainable jet fuel.

Jet fuel is Metafuels' main event, and the company has secured its ticket to produce aviation-standard fuel. The challenge is colossal, requiring the fuel to weather extremes — from the frigid heights to the blistering heat of a Houston airstrip. Leigh Hackett, Metafuels' co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer, underscores the company's unwavering commitment to operational safety throughout the process.

Metafuels has set an audacious goal: a 100% synthetic jet fuel substitute by 2030. This ambitious vision is not merely a technological marvel but a pledge to seamlessly integrate into existing global renewable energy systems, breaking free from traditional fossil fuel supply chains. Competitors, such as LanzaJet, are also in the race, but Metafuels just received an $8 million turbo boost to its already ambitious plans. The funding round, spearheaded by Energy Impact Partners and Contrarian Ventures, signifies a strong vote of confidence in Metafuels' mission.

Metafuels' eSAF technology provides a smooth transition from fossil-based kerosene, using a proprietary process to convert green methanol into eSAF. The magic ingredients? Hydrogen (H2) and sustainably sourced carbon dioxide. The green H2 is generated through water electrolysis powered by renewable electricity, while CO2 is captured from biogenic sources, including waste and residue. Metafuels' poetic long-term plan involves direct air capture — a cyclical dance of capturing gas, putting it into planes, soaring through the air, and putting it back into the atmosphere.

Metafuels' aerobrew is not just an intriguing stepping stone; it's a potential game-changer until battery or hydrogen-powered planes dominate the skies. What sets Metafuels apart is its ability to fuel existing aircraft without modifications. The recent $8 million infusion solidifies Metafuels' position as a frontrunner in the race to provide sustainable aviation fuel, challenging the status quo and propelling us toward a greener future where the skies are not just a destination but a commitment to sustainability.

Neil Hodgson-Coyle
Neil Hodgson-Coyle
Editorial chief at TechNews180
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