Founder: Andrew Symes
OXCCU is at the forefront of scientific advancement, shaping the future of sustainable energy, chemical and plastic production. The company was founded in 2021 and spun out of the University of Oxford by co-founders Andrew Symes whilst working at IP Group and Jane Jin whilst working at OUI. OXCCU is underpinned by scientific breakthroughs published in top-tier scientific journals by academic founders Tiancun Xiao, Pete Edwards and Benzhen Yao.
OXCCU’s mission is to enable future generations to continue using hydrocarbon fuels but without their climate impact. They manufacture novel catalysts and design novel reactors to convert CO2 and H2 to long-chain hydrocarbons with high conversion and selectivity for use as carbon neutral fuels, chemicals and plastics, most notably Sustainable Aviation Fuel, called OXEFUEL.
To limit the impact of greenhouse gas emissions, the world must transition to net zero emissions within just 30 years. While some sectors, such as power, are already on this path, not all sectors are easy to decarbonise using renewable electricity directly. In particular, long-distance aviation transport fuels, with energy density requirements far beyond current batteries, and petrochemicals, where carbon molecules become the multitude of products we use in our everyday lives.
Here is where OXCCU offers a unique solution. Their inexpensive catalysts work with remarkable efficiency and selectivity, transforming CO2 into valuable hydrocarbons in a groundbreaking one-step process. This is distinctive to other e-fuels companies that are focused on the two-step approach.
Through the OXCCU process, CO2 is transformed directly into e- fuels, sustainable chemicals and biodegradable plastics, in a single step and without producing significant amounts of alcohols as a byproduct. Modelling completed by independent researchers from Imperial College London, through Imperial Consultants, has shown that OXCCU’s one-step process significantly reduces operational costs due to higher selectivity yield in the jet fuel range, has a 50% lower capital cost and has a reduced environmental impact.
Earlier this year, OXCCU secured £18m in Series A funding, and most recently, they were awarded a £2.8 million government grant to fast-track decarbonisation of the aviation sector. This accomplishment fuels their ongoing mission—to scale sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) production in both the UK and on a global scale. From SAF, they can progress to manufacturing chemicals and plastics on a broad scale. Eventually, we will reach a future where specific sectors can continue to use hydrocarbons – and people can still fly, use household chemicals, and buy biodegradable plastic products – but without concerns about their impact on climate change.