CoorsTek announces conversion of natural gas to liquids without CO2 emissions

The procedure uses natural gas as raw material for aromatic chemicals and a ceramic membrane to make the direct, non-oxidative conversion of gas to liquids possible for the first time. It not only reduces cost and eliminates multiple process steps, but it also avoids any carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. The resulting aromatic precursors are source chemicals for insulation materials, plastics, textiles, and jet fuel, among other products.

Dr. Jose Serra, Professor with the Instituto de Tecnología Química (ITQ) in Valencia, Spain, a research lab for hydrocarbon catalysis, said that with new ceramic membrane reactors to make fuels and chemicals from natural gas instead of crude oil, the whole hydrocarbon value chain can become significantly less expensive and cleaner.

Direct activation of methane, the main component of biogas and natural gas, has been a key goal of the hydrocarbon research community for many years.

This new process is detailed in a research paper entitled “Direct conversion of methane to aromatics in a catalytic co-ionic membrane reactor”, published in the journal Science on 5 August 2016.