Practical Experience with a Mobile Methanol Synthesis Device

Eric R. Morgan, Tom L Acker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

A methanol synthesis unit (MSU) that directly converts carbon dioxide and hydrogen into methanol and water was developed and tested. The MSU consists of: a high-pressure side that includes a compressor, a reactor, and a throttling valve; and a low-pressure side that includes a knockout drum, and a mixer where fresh gas enters the system. Methanol and water are produced at high pressure in the reactor and then exit the system under low pressure and temperature in the knockout drum. The remaining, unreacted recycle gas that leaves the knockout drum is mixed with fresh synthesis gas before being sent back through the synthesis loop. The unit operates entirely on electricity and includes a high-pressure electrolyzer to obtain gaseous hydrogen and oxygen directly from purified water. Thus, the sole inputs to the trailer are water, carbon dioxide, and electricity, while the sole outputs are methanol, oxygen, and water. A distillation unit separates the methanol and water mixture on site so that the synthesized water can be reused in the electrolyzer. Here, we describe and characterize the operation of the MSU and offer some possible design improvements for future iterations of the device, based on experience.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number064506
JournalJournal of Solar Energy Engineering, Transactions of the ASME
Volume137
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015

Fingerprint

Methanol
Water
Carbon dioxide
Electricity
Hydrogen
Oxygen
Light trailers
Synthesis gas
Gases
Distillation
Compressors
Temperature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment

Cite this

Practical Experience with a Mobile Methanol Synthesis Device. / Morgan, Eric R.; Acker, Tom L.

In: Journal of Solar Energy Engineering, Transactions of the ASME, Vol. 137, No. 6, 064506, 01.12.2015.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{7b22f859d90d400b991d187fa894236e,
title = "Practical Experience with a Mobile Methanol Synthesis Device",
abstract = "A methanol synthesis unit (MSU) that directly converts carbon dioxide and hydrogen into methanol and water was developed and tested. The MSU consists of: a high-pressure side that includes a compressor, a reactor, and a throttling valve; and a low-pressure side that includes a knockout drum, and a mixer where fresh gas enters the system. Methanol and water are produced at high pressure in the reactor and then exit the system under low pressure and temperature in the knockout drum. The remaining, unreacted recycle gas that leaves the knockout drum is mixed with fresh synthesis gas before being sent back through the synthesis loop. The unit operates entirely on electricity and includes a high-pressure electrolyzer to obtain gaseous hydrogen and oxygen directly from purified water. Thus, the sole inputs to the trailer are water, carbon dioxide, and electricity, while the sole outputs are methanol, oxygen, and water. A distillation unit separates the methanol and water mixture on site so that the synthesized water can be reused in the electrolyzer. Here, we describe and characterize the operation of the MSU and offer some possible design improvements for future iterations of the device, based on experience.",
author = "Morgan, {Eric R.} and Acker, {Tom L}",
year = "2015",
month = "12",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1115/1.4031513",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "137",
journal = "Journal of Solar Energy Engineering, Transactions of the ASME",
issn = "0199-6231",
publisher = "American Society of Mechanical Engineers(ASME)",
number = "6",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Practical Experience with a Mobile Methanol Synthesis Device

AU - Morgan, Eric R.

AU - Acker, Tom L

PY - 2015/12/1

Y1 - 2015/12/1

N2 - A methanol synthesis unit (MSU) that directly converts carbon dioxide and hydrogen into methanol and water was developed and tested. The MSU consists of: a high-pressure side that includes a compressor, a reactor, and a throttling valve; and a low-pressure side that includes a knockout drum, and a mixer where fresh gas enters the system. Methanol and water are produced at high pressure in the reactor and then exit the system under low pressure and temperature in the knockout drum. The remaining, unreacted recycle gas that leaves the knockout drum is mixed with fresh synthesis gas before being sent back through the synthesis loop. The unit operates entirely on electricity and includes a high-pressure electrolyzer to obtain gaseous hydrogen and oxygen directly from purified water. Thus, the sole inputs to the trailer are water, carbon dioxide, and electricity, while the sole outputs are methanol, oxygen, and water. A distillation unit separates the methanol and water mixture on site so that the synthesized water can be reused in the electrolyzer. Here, we describe and characterize the operation of the MSU and offer some possible design improvements for future iterations of the device, based on experience.

AB - A methanol synthesis unit (MSU) that directly converts carbon dioxide and hydrogen into methanol and water was developed and tested. The MSU consists of: a high-pressure side that includes a compressor, a reactor, and a throttling valve; and a low-pressure side that includes a knockout drum, and a mixer where fresh gas enters the system. Methanol and water are produced at high pressure in the reactor and then exit the system under low pressure and temperature in the knockout drum. The remaining, unreacted recycle gas that leaves the knockout drum is mixed with fresh synthesis gas before being sent back through the synthesis loop. The unit operates entirely on electricity and includes a high-pressure electrolyzer to obtain gaseous hydrogen and oxygen directly from purified water. Thus, the sole inputs to the trailer are water, carbon dioxide, and electricity, while the sole outputs are methanol, oxygen, and water. A distillation unit separates the methanol and water mixture on site so that the synthesized water can be reused in the electrolyzer. Here, we describe and characterize the operation of the MSU and offer some possible design improvements for future iterations of the device, based on experience.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84944769239&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84944769239&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1115/1.4031513

DO - 10.1115/1.4031513

M3 - Article

VL - 137

JO - Journal of Solar Energy Engineering, Transactions of the ASME

JF - Journal of Solar Energy Engineering, Transactions of the ASME

SN - 0199-6231

IS - 6

M1 - 064506

ER -