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Renewable Methanol Synthesis


Renewable methanol production is an emerging technology that bridges the gap in the shift from fossil fuel to renewable energy. Two thirds of the global emission of CO2 stems from humanity’s increasing energy need from fossil fuels. Renewable energy, mainly from solar and wind energy, suffers from supply intermittency, which current grid infrastructures cannot accommodate. Excess renewable energy can be harnessed to power the electrolysis of water to produce hydrogen, which can be used in the catalytic hydrogenation of waste CO2 to produce renewable methanol. This review considers methanol production in the current context, regionally for Europe, which is dominated by Germany, and globally by China. Appropriate carbon-based feedstock for renewable methanol production is considered, as well as state-of-the-art renewable hydrogen production technologies. The economics of renewable methanol production necessitates the consideration of regionally relevant methanol derivatives. The thermodynamics, kinetics, catalytic reaction mechanism, operating conditions and reactor design are reviewed in the context of renewable methanol production to reveal the most up to date understanding.

Funding source: This work was financially supported by the Development Bank of Saxony (Sa¨chsische Aufbaubank) – European Social Fund (ESF), grant number 100240621 (DELTA project).
Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Germany

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