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Drop in fuels or pure biofuels? - total costs and greenhouse gas perfo

The project aims to provide an increased understanding of different fuel chains as alternatives in a transition towards a sustainable transport system. Today, there is an established fuel infrastructure based on hydrocarbons as liquid energy carriers, mainly gasoline and diesel, based on their ease of production from fossil oil. It is also possible

The comparison focuses on two types of biofuels, those that fit into today's infrastructure, so-called drop in hydrocarbon fuels, and fuels that are more efficient to produce from biomass but do not fit directly into today's infrastructure. This latter category is often characterized by small molecules of a single chemical substance, so-called "single-molecular" fuels. Typical examples are methane, methanol, dimethyl ether and ethanol. The production of single-molecular fuels is often efficient in terms of raw materials and costs, but generally requires a dedicated distribution infrastructure. The second category, "drop-in" fuels consists of longer carbon chains and are compatible with existing infrastructure but are more energy-intensive and more expensive to produce.

It is of great interest for both fuel producers and vehicle manufacturers to gain a greater understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of the two different alternatives and the considerations that determine which alternative is advantageous from an overall perspective. A number of representatives of both these categories of companies participate in the project. 

The project compares a number of fuel chains, both single-molecular and drop-in, with respect to greenhouse gas performance and total cost (including production, distribution and vehicles). The results of the analysis increases the knowledge about the role different fuels can play in a future energy system and provides the basis for strategic decisions on development and production in the companies. It also gives an improved basis for policy decisions, eg regarding R&D support and policy instruments.

Project results

Project report (pdf, 1.72 MB)

Executive summary (pdf, 397.1 KB)


Project name

Drop in fuels or pure biofuels?



RISE role in project

Teknisk och tekno-ekonomisk analys av drivmedelskedjor

Project start


Avslutas i juni 2021

Total budget

1 700 000 SEK


IVL, E.ON, Lantmännen Agroetanol, Scania CV, Södra Skogsägarna, Volvo Personvagnar, Volvo Technology, Adesso Bioproducts


Energimyndigheten, f3 Svenskt kunskapscentrum för förnybara drivmedel


Project members

Supports the UN sustainability goals

7. Affordable and clean energy
9. Industry, innovation and infrastructure
13. Climate action
Erik Furusjö

Contact person

Erik Furusjö


+46 10 228 45 67

Read more about Erik

Contact Erik
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