TITLE: Low Temperature Methanol Process.
AUTHOR: T. E. O'Hare; R. S. Sapienza; D. Mahajan; G. T. Skaperdas.
INST. AUTHOR: Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY.
SPONSOR: Department of Energy, Washington, DC.
PUB. TYPE: Technical Report
PUB. COUNTRY: United States
SOURCE: Department of Energy [DE], Jun 86, 11p*.
NTIS ORDER NO.: DE87006462/INW
NOTES: 21. American Chemical Society state-of-the-art symposium Division of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry, Marco Island, FL, USA, 15 Jun 1986.
The world's abundant natural gas resources could provide methanol in fuel quantities to the utility system. Natural gas liquefaction is the current major option available for international export transport of natural gas. Gas production is on the increase and international trade even more so, with LNG making most progress. The further penetration of natural gas into distant markets can be substantially increased by a new methanol synthesis process under development. The new methanol process is made possible by the discovery of a catalyst that drops synthesis temperatures from about 275 sup 0 C to about 100 sup 0 C. Furthermore, the new catalyst is a liquid phase system, which permits the synthesis reaction to proceed at fully isothermal conditions. Therefore, the new low temperature liquid catalyst can convert synthesis gas completely to methanol in a single pass through the methanol synthesis reactor. This characteristic leads to a further major improvement in the methanol plant. Atmospheric nitrogen can be tolerated in the synthesis gas, and still the volume of gas fed to the reactor can be smaller than the volume of gas that must be fed to the reactor when accommodating the very low conversions furnished by the best of currently available catalysts. The energy disadvantage of the methanol option must be balanced against the advantage of a much lower capital investment requirement made possible by the new BNL synthesis. Preliminary estimates show that methanol conversion and shipping require an investment for liquefaction to methanol, and shipping liquefied methanol that can range from 35 to 50% of that needed for the LNG plant and LNG shipping fleet. (ERA citation 12:024681)
REPORT NUMBER: BNL-39188; CONF-8606274-1
CONTRACT NUMBER: AC02-76CH00016