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Distinct facets to enhance the process of hydrogen production via methanol steam reforming—A review


Methanol steam reforming manifests great potential for generating hydrogen owing to its lower reaction temperature (200–300 °C) and higher hydrogen/carbon ratio comparing with ethanol and methane reforming. In this case, methanol steam reforming is applied in various renewable energy systems to assist the energy conversion and improve the system efficiency. The performance of methanol steam reforming reaction strongly depends on the catalysts and reactor structure. In this paper, the development of the copper-based, the noble metal–based and the nanomaterial catalysts were summarized by analyzing the effects of different modification methods, which indicates that cutting the cost and simplifying the manufacturing process are the future goal of catalyst modification. Moreover, the reaction mechanism of different catalyst type was discussed. For the reactor performance, conventional, miniature, micro, and membrane reactors were discussed and compared, where conventional reactor with high CO tolerance is more suitable for industrial application while membrane reactor with high H2 purity and compact structure is ideal for fuel cell technology. The integration of the methanol steam reforming system into renewable power systems was reviewed as well. Methanol steam reforming technology is of great potential in exhaust heat recovery, cogeneration system and other renewable energy field, where more comprehensive research should be performed.

Funding source: The authors would like to thank the support of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Project Nos.: 51876061, 51821004).
Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain

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