“Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize 2023” awarded by TU Wien


Vienna, 26 May 2023 - Today, TU Wien awarded the 23rd "Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize" to Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Karl Dums of Porsche AG, Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Marcos Remedios Marques (formerly Porsche AG, now HIF Global) and Dipl.-Ing. Rolf Schumacher of HIF Global for the first industrial production of e-fuel in Chile. The jury of the renowned automotive technology award feels that the construction of the "Haru Oni" pilot plant in the southern Chilean region of Patagonia will lay important foundations for the potentially nearly climate-neutral production of large quantities of e-fuels at competitive prices in the coming years. Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Karl Dums and Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Marcos Remedios Marques, Project Managers for e-fuels at Dr. Ing. h. c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, and Dipl.-Ing. Rolf Schumacher, Chief Innovation Officer of HIF Global, Berlin, were key contributors.


Prof Dr Sabine Seidler, Rector of TU Wien, together with Dr Wolfgang Porsche, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Porsche AG, and Dr Hans Michel Piëch, Member of the Supervisory Board of Porsche AG, presented the plaques and certificates for the EUR 50,000 Porsche Prize to the prize winners in the university's ceremonial hall (Festsaal).

Prof Dr Bernhard Geringer, Head of the Institute of Powertrains and Automotive Technology at TU Wien, explained the jury's decision: "It is undisputed that the energy and vehicle industries must make every possible effort to combat the climate problem and consequently the continuing emission of more greenhouse gases - especially carbon dioxide. A closed CO2 cycle similar to nature will prove essential for achieving climate neutrality. We not only need both ecological powertrains and local green energy like electricity, but also e-fuels to replace the fossil fuels oil and natural gas. Additionally, e-fuels can be used to gradually convert the current fleet of 1.3 billion vehicles worldwide to climate-neutral fuels. Another very important advantage of these innovative green energy sources is that they can easily be stored for long periods of time, e.g. in case of supply bottlenecks or even just for the winter season. The only limitation is the sufficient availability and economy of e-fuels, which is why implementation must begin as soon as possible."

In his laudatory speech, Dr Oliver Blume, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AGand Porsche AG, spoke on the importance of e-fuels: "Climate change requires fast, consistent and efficient action - including in the transport sector. We must resolutely drive the decarbonization of mobility. The ambitious ramp-up of electromobility is the highest priority. But we also need to keep an eye on the existing fleet. There are around 1.3 billion combustion engines on the road today. Many of them will remain on the market for decades. Every percent of e-fuels that is blended into other fuels could reduce CO₂ emissions - in existing fleets but equally in niches and other transport sectors such as aviation and waterborne transport. Renewable, synthetic fuels can potentially make gasoline engines nearly carbon neutral."

Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Karl Dums and Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Marcos Remedios Marques are both delighted about the award. Dums comments that "Climate-neutral synthetic fuels offer the possibility of making combustion vehicles nearly carbon neutral. Especially when they are produced in places around the world where sustainable energy is abundant - as it is in Chile. We are pleased that our entire team's work on the pilot plant for the industrial production of e-fuels is so highly regarded, and we will continue to fully dedicate ourselves to working on it."

In his acceptance speech, Dipl.-Ing. Rolf Schumacher, Chief Innovation Officer at HIF Global, states: "We should view synthetically and sustainably produced e-fuels as a real opportunity to drive the decarbonization of mobility. Haru Oni is just the kick-off. At HIF Global, we are already planning further sites for the production of nearly climate-neutral synthetic fuels. Receiving the Porsche Prize is both an honour and an incentive for us to continue to scale up the production of e-fuels worldwide."

The "Haru Oni" pilot plant opened at the end of 2022 and will initially produce around 130,000 litres of e-fuels per year. These will primarily be used in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup and other select flagship projects. In Chile alone, HIF Global is planning plants with an annual capacity of up to 3 billion litres of fuel. In addition to expanding electromobility, the main purpose of e-fuels is to significantly and rapidly reduce the carbon footprint of existing vehicles. 

Southern Chile is ideal for the production of e-fuels. There, wind turbines can run at full load 270 days a year, three and a half times as much as in Germany. From the nearby port of Cabo Negro on the Strait of Magellan, the e-fuels can be transported all over the world by ship like conventional fuels and distributed via the existing infrastructure.

The TU Wien "Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize"

Now in its 46th year, the TU Wien "Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize" remains one of the most prestigious and highly endowed awards for pioneering research and development achievements in the field of automotive engineering. The prize is awarded every two years. The internationally recognized prize was endowed in 1976 by Louise Piëch, the daughter of Ferdinand Porsche. It was awarded for the first time in 1977. Porsche Holding Salzburg and Stuttgart-based Dr Ing. h. c. F. Porsche AG each contribute half of the EUR 50,000 prize money.

The previous winners of the TU Wien “Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize”