Ultralow Carbon SAF from Corn Stover

7.5 billion gallons per year of SAF by 2040


Sustainable Aviation Fuel from Renewable Ethanol



7.5 billion gallons per year of SAF by 2040


How It Works

Processing corn stover: The corn stover used in the SAFFiRE process is a waste feedstock that would otherwise be left to decompose in the fields. Corn stover is collected by or purchased from local farmers and processed through a proprietary deacetylation and disk refining technology developed by NREL called “pretreatment.”

Converts into renewable ethanol: Once the corn stover is pretreated, we use existing, proven technology to hydrolyze, ferment, and separate it into renewable ethanol.






Upgrades to sustainable aviation fuel: Alcohol-to-jet technology is utilized to ultimately upgrade renewable ethanol into fully certified sustainable aviation fuel that can be used in aircraft.


More on the Technology

“Overall the technology risk is low as most of the process has been demonstrated at commercial scale.”

  • NREL has repeatedly demonstrated Deacetylation and Mechanical Refining (DMR) pretreatment at pilot scale; DMR uses standard, off-the-shelf equipment used in the pulp and paper industry

  • All other unit operations to produce SAF from corn stover are commercial; we use commercially available enzymes and yeast

  • The LanzaJet Alcohol-to-Jet process is commercial

  • LanzaJet has received ASTM D4054 approval for its SAF



SAFFiRE Partners


Project Partners




Sustainable Aviation Fuel From Renewable Ethanol

  • The global aviation industry seeks to reduce its GHG emissions by 50% by 2050

  • To meet its decarbonization goals, the aviation industry requires billions of gallons of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF)

  • The current cost of SAF is high; production costs must be reduced to meet long-term GHG reduction goals

  • More sources of low-cost feedstock are required as fats, oils, and greases currently used to make SAF are not available in enough volume to meet SAF demand



Mark Yancey CEO


Phone: 303-906-6234

Mark first joined BBI International in 2001 as Manager of Consulting. By 2008, Mark had grown the BBI consulting business to a 25-person engineering and project development team that completed more than 200 technical projects and assisted clients in the development of six ethanol plants and one biodiesel plant from “concept to construction.” These plants produce over 300 million annual gallons of biofuels and represent over $500 million in capital investment. All of these plants are in operation today. From 2006 to 2009, the BBI process engineering team developed BBI’s patented biomass-to-ethanol technology. Mark is a co-inventor on the patent. In 2009 Mark left BBI to start NEAtech, which successfully provided renewable energy and consulting services for five years. In 2013 Mark rejoined BBI as Vice President of BBI Project Development. After rejoining BBI, Mark oversaw the development and successful commercialization of BBI's patented corn fiber-to-ethanol technology under the D3MAX LLC name. Mark retired from BBI in 2020, but continues as the CTO of D3MAX and now the CEO of SAFFiRE. Prior to joining BBI, Mark was the Industrial Partnership Team Leader for the Biofuels Program at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado. Mark’s NREL duties included identifying and analyzing new opportunities for the application of technologies for the production of ethanol from lignocellulosic biomass. During his nine years at NREL, Mark managed a wide variety of projects including the technical and economic evaluation of converting forest residues, wood waste, wheat straw, rice straw and spent brewer’s grain to ethanol. Mark has a detailed understanding of ethanol production from both starch and sugar-based feedstocks as well as lignocellulosic biomass feedstocks. Mark has a BS degree in Chemical Engineering from Stanford University. With over 35 years of experience in renewable energy, Mark brings a wealth of business and technical experience to SAFFiRE.