Donate Bitcoin

Donate Paypal


PeakOil is You

PeakOil is You

CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: Future Energy Technology News

Unread postby pstarr » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 11:15:09

The old crew at NBC was savvy. They wouldn't have been taken in by such nonsense.

Image
Haven't you heard? I'm a doomer!
pstarr
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 26332
Joined: Mon 27 Sep 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Behind the Redwood Curtain

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby Tanada » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 12:34:52

Proving yet one more time that synthetic fuel is a form of energy storage, not creation. Basic entropy, you don't get something out unless you put something in, and the input always exceeds the output.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
User avatar
Tanada
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14060
Joined: Thu 28 Apr 2005, 02:00:00
Location: South West shore Lake Erie, OH, USA

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby TheAntiDoomer » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 12:44:12

You guys seem to be missing the point. The point of synthetic fuels is to efficiently convert solar energy into a liquid form. If you can do that even close to a 1 to 1 you have a HUGE winner, as it makes solar power an extremly powerful industry.
"The human ability to innovate out of a jam is profound.That’s why Darwin will always be right, and Malthus will always be wrong.” -K.R. Sridhar


Do I make you Corny? :)

"expect 8$ gas on 08/08/08" - Prognosticator
User avatar
TheAntiDoomer
Light Sweet Crude
Light Sweet Crude
 
Posts: 1556
Joined: Wed 18 Jun 2008, 02:00:00

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby pstarr » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 13:49:49

TheAntiDoomer wrote:You guys seem to be missing the point. The point of synthetic fuels is to efficiently convert solar energy into a liquid form. If you can do that even close to a 1 to 1 you have a HUGE winner, as it makes solar power an extremly powerful industry.
This makes little sense.

--close to 1 to 1 is not good enough. The industrial process should have a positive EROEI, or why bother. Throwing good energy away for bad energy makes no sense. Unless the process is incredibly cheap. Fischer-Tropf has been around for almost a century, yet has never panned out except in time of war.

--Unlike the this CO2 + H2O-perpetual-energy scheme, corn ethanol production has an positive energy return of 1.34 to 1. Yet it is not a HUGE winner, but rousing failure.
Haven't you heard? I'm a doomer!
pstarr
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 26332
Joined: Mon 27 Sep 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Behind the Redwood Curtain

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby kublikhan » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 14:27:48

Tanada wrote:I am impatient for someone somewhere to scale up these laboratory proven technologies and find out if they are practical on an industrial scale. We can test in the lab and talk about the results forever without having any real impact unless someone gets the first plant built as proof of concept and economical viability.
Did you see Audi's plant?

Audi has opened the doors to its new power-to-gas facility, which will make what the automaker calls E-gas, in Werlte, Germany. The plant produces hydrogen and synthetic methane and these clean fuels come from renewable energy, water and carbon dioxide. Audi says it's the first automaker to "develop a chain of sustainable energy carriers."

The Audi E-gas plant uses electrolysis to split water molecules into oxygen and hydrogen, which will someday power fuel-cell vehicles. For now, methanation is the process used to make the synthetic natural gas. Audi reacts the hydrogen with CO2 to generate renewable synthetic methane. The E-gas can be delivered through existing natural gas pipes since, chemically speaking, it's nearly identical to natural gas. Delivery of E-gas through the infrastructure is scheduled to start in the fall of 2013.

Audi says E-gas from the plant can power 1,500 new Audi A3 Sportback G-tron vehicles for 15,000 CO2-neutral kilometers (about 9,321 miles) each year. The Werlte plant is part of Audi's comprehensive e-fuels strategy and sustainability initiative.

The Audi e-gas plant will produce about 1,000 metric tons of e-gas per year, chemically binding some 2,800 metric tons of CO2. This roughly corresponds to the amount that a forest of over 220,000 beech trees absorbs in one year. Water and oxygen are the only by-products.

The Audi e-gas project transcends the automobile industry. It shows how large amounts of green electricity can be stored efficiently and independently of location by transforming it into methane gas and storing it in the natural gas network, the largest public energy storage system in Germany. With the e-gas project, Audi is a part of and a driver of the energy revolution. Major German energy utilities have since taken up the idea of power-to-gas cogeneration and are following Audi with initial projects of their own.
Audi opens renewable energy E-gas plant in Germany

--close to 1 to 1 is not good enough. The industrial process should have a positive EROEI, or why bother. Throwing good energy away for bad energy makes no sense. Unless the process is incredibly cheap. Fischer-Tropf has been around for almost a century, yet has never panned out except in time of war.

--Unlike the this CO2 + H2O-perpetual-energy scheme, corn ethanol production has an positive energy return of 1.34 to 1. Yet it is not a HUGE winner, but rousing failure.
All energy storage has negative EROEI, simple thermodynamics. Storing excess energy from wind and solar is currently problematic. Pumped hydro & underground storage are geologically constrained. Batteries are too expensive. If it turns out to be economically viable to store excess wind/solar energy in the form of synthetic fuel, seems like a good idea to me. Certainly better than corn ethanol.
The oil barrel is half-full.
User avatar
kublikhan
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 4019
Joined: Tue 06 Nov 2007, 03:00:00
Location: Illinois

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby TheAntiDoomer » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 14:39:06

Exactly ^ thanks Kub!
"The human ability to innovate out of a jam is profound.That’s why Darwin will always be right, and Malthus will always be wrong.” -K.R. Sridhar


Do I make you Corny? :)

"expect 8$ gas on 08/08/08" - Prognosticator
User avatar
TheAntiDoomer
Light Sweet Crude
Light Sweet Crude
 
Posts: 1556
Joined: Wed 18 Jun 2008, 02:00:00

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby pstarr » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 15:33:05

kublikhan wrote:
--close to 1 to 1 is not good enough. The industrial process should have a positive EROEI, or why bother. Throwing good energy away for bad energy makes no sense. Unless the process is incredibly cheap. Fischer-Tropf has been around for almost a century, yet has never panned out except in time of war.

--Unlike the this CO2 + H2O-perpetual-energy scheme, corn ethanol production has an positive energy return of 1.34 to 1. Yet it is not a HUGE winner, but rousing failure.
All energy storage has negative EROEI, simple thermodynamics. Storing excess energy from wind and solar is currently problematic. Pumped hydro & underground storage are geologically constrained. Batteries are too expensive. If it turns out to be economically viable to store excess wind/solar energy in the form of synthetic fuel, seems like a good idea to me. Certainly better than corn ethanol.

The article in question/this discussion is not about storage, but rather energy carriers, solar-based synthetic fuels. From the article:
The predicted shortages of fossil fuels at some indefinite time in the
future gives rise to a search for alternatives.
Biofuels is an efficient conversion from sun to liquid fuel, probably with less losses than other industrial process, including the method outlined. (That is why Bush mandated corn>ethanol, not CO2 + H2O + Energy). Anyway, all alternative fuel/storage methods are more costly than crude oil and our auto-dependent consumer society requires cheap gasoline.
Haven't you heard? I'm a doomer!
pstarr
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 26332
Joined: Mon 27 Sep 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Behind the Redwood Curtain

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby kublikhan » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 16:27:38

pstarr wrote:The article in question/this discussion is not about storage, but rather energy carriers, solar-based synthetic fuels.
Both approaches are being pursed. Using the process for energy storage to smooth out intermittent renewables and for producing an energy carrier to power vehicles.

In Germany two demonstration power-to-gas (P2G) plants designed to store excess electricity generated by renewable sources have begun operation. The amount of electricity generated each year by renewables is rising, but the intermittency of some of these sources, such as wind and solar, poses challenges for the grid. Banking excess electricity to feed into the grid at a future point, when it is needed, can be achieved using various storage technologies such as batteries. However, P2G plants open up the possibility of using this excess energy in different ways. In Germany, which has the largest installed capacity of wind and solar, several demonstration P2G plants are being evaluated for their smart grid potential.

The plant will bank excess power that is generated by wind farms, producing about 360m³ of hydrogen an hour. The hydrogen will be fed into the natural gas pipeline at around 2% by volume, at a maximum operating pressure of 55bar, effectively storing and transporting surplus renewable energy. After converting excess wind energy to hydrogen, the plant uses the hydrogen and biogas to generate heat and power. An alkaline electrolyser is used in the plant, which has been operational since 2011.

Future
By the latter part of this decade P2G could start to establish itself as a flexible storage technology in power grids as more electricity is produced from renewable sources.
Wind Power-to-Gas (P2G) technology

I see both efforts as worthwhile: Using the process to smooth out intermittent electricity generation and also producing synthetic fuels to run ICE vehicles. If we can turn renewable energy, CO2, and H2O into synthetic fuel, why would you find this to be objectionable? Even if only 90% of the energy generated ends up as energy carried in the final fuel, we are still coming out ahead because solar pv & wind have much higher EROEIs than 1.1:1.

pstarr wrote:Biofuels are a efficient conversion from sun to liquid fuel, probably with less losses than any industrial process, including the method outlined. (That is why Bush mandated it. But of course he was wrong because of the scope and also the limited eroei)
The only inputs we are talking about here are CO2, H2O, and energy. Biofuels have additional inputs. Trying to scale up biofuel production to replace current liquid fuel needs would exacerbate existing problems like topsoil depletion, dwindling phosphorus resources, etc.
The oil barrel is half-full.
User avatar
kublikhan
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 4019
Joined: Tue 06 Nov 2007, 03:00:00
Location: Illinois

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby dinopello » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 16:37:47

CO2 + H2O + Energy (C12H22O11) = Soda Pop !

Synthetic fuel is a battery and can be useful but is not energy. As the formula implies, it is a consumer of energy.
User avatar
dinopello
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 6093
Joined: Fri 13 May 2005, 02:00:00
Location: The Urban Village

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby Subjectivist » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 18:14:35

dinopello wrote:CO2 + H2O + Energy (C12H22O11) = Soda Pop !

Synthetic fuel is a battery and can be useful but is not energy. As the formula implies, it is a consumer of energy.


Exactly, and you can take all those diffuse energy sources you care to name to manufacture high energy liquid fuels that will integrate into the existing system of spply and demand seamlessly.
II Chronicles 7:14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
User avatar
Subjectivist
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 4120
Joined: Sat 28 Aug 2010, 06:38:26
Location: Northwest Ohio

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 18:38:01

Did you read the thread Dino? Tanada brought the topic up before the Fukushima disaster, with the idea being about the potential to use nuclear power to keep going with ICE vehicles.

(Also the oil we currently burn as liquid fuels is a 'storage device' containing billions of years of solar energy.)
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 9045
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby pstarr » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 20:45:39

kublikhan wrote:The only inputs we are talking about here are CO2, H2O, and energy. Biofuels have additional inputs.
Yes. Biofuels have additional inputs: free solar and free photosynthesis. The plants take solar, CO2, to synthesize carbohydrates, starch, and sugars, the inputs into fermentation/distillations processes.

kublikhan wrote:Trying to scale up biofuel production to replace current liquid fuel needs would exacerbate existing problems like topsoil depletion, dwindling phosphorus resources, etc.
Yes. But the CO1/H20/Energy system requires concrete, steel, fossil fuels, and electricity.

My point is not that one is better than the other, but really both are loosers, not solutions. Neither will maintain our entropic, planet-destroying, consumer system, because either solution has untended consequences such as AGW, ozone depletion, erosion, water depletion, etc. etc.
Haven't you heard? I'm a doomer!
pstarr
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 26332
Joined: Mon 27 Sep 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Behind the Redwood Curtain

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby kublikhan » Wed 24 Jul 2013, 22:56:04

pstarr wrote:Yes. Biofuels have additional inputs: free solar and free photosynthesis. The plants take solar, CO2, to synthesize carbohydrates, starch, and sugars, the inputs into fermentation/distillations processes.
I think you forgot a few inputs there.

Many environmentalists know that the way most corn is grown in our country is very hard on soil and uses enormous amounts of water and chemicals. In fact, a recent report for the Department of Defense acknowledged that, "Current biomass-to-fuel methods of production present a significant environmental burden GHGs, soil depletion and erosion, waste water, etc.)"

To maximize the subsidies agribusiness receives, the corn producers use monocropping that makes the crop more susceptible to insects and disease. To overcome these threats to their yield, the corn producers apply enormous amounts of fertilizers and pesticides. Although atrazine has been banned in Europe, it is the most commonly used pesticide by US corn producers. The soil erosion caused by corn monocropping creates runoff and this chemical seeps into the drinking water in many communities. EPA has established a safe level in drinking water [6], but tests have discovered 75 times that amount in some Midwestern streams.

Ethanol proponents are now claiming that there is not enough corn to "feed" ethanol plants and want to put some of the 37 million acres enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program back into crop production. "The Conservation Reserve Program reduces soil erosion, protects the Nation's ability to produce food and fiber, reduces sedimentation in streams and lakes, improves water quality, establishes wildlife habitat, and enhances forest and wetland resources."

Increasing corn-ethanol gives you MORE pesticide contamination, MORE drilling for gas, MORE air pollution from E85 & refineries, MORE greenhouse gasses as they move to coal to power refineries, MORE demand on our water system, MORE water and air pollution, MORE soil erosion, and LESS land protected in the Conservation Reserve Program.
Environmentalists Need to Help Fight Bush's Ethanol Surge

There will be a major and significant increase in the amount of fertilizer nutrients farmers annually mine from the soil substrate.

Potash demand in particular is likely to soar to unprecendented levels as this particular mineral fertilizer is essential for plant structural integrity. If you remove 3 tonnes per hectare of straw (an average global yield) that is a cumulative potash export of 36kg /ha on top of what is removed in the grain. Can our global potash resources stand up to such a major ramp up in demand?

The story for nitrogen is somewhat similar. Again if we look at quantifying nutrient removal. 1 tonne of cereal stubble will contain the nitrogen equivalent from 13kg of urea. So a cumulative removal of 39kg/ha of urea on top of that removed in the grain portion in a 3 tonne yield. Are our global natural gas resources up to this gearing up of the demand base?

For phosphate there is also bad news as we see additional phosphorus units being lost from the cropping system. 3 tonne of stubble removed sees the equivalent phosphorus export of around 33kg of superphosphate.

With these figures in mind, there is the potential for fertilizer prices to soar to levels not ever seen nor even imagined as this demand base kicks in. Yet again we saw more significant rises in the last week with DAP surging past the US$700 per tonne mark.

What happens to our soils as they are left exposed to the vagaries of extremes in weather with no physical defences from erosion? I shudder to think. Soil organic carbon levels will likely plummet as the practise of straw retention becomes a major short term opportunity cost.

Quite clearly cellulosic ethanol is likely to push agriculture to the brink of its true sustainability limits. And it is likely to stretch demand for fertilizers to a new level where existing and planned new capacity may struggle to satisfy the hunger of nutrient cleansed soil profiles from the Pampas of Argentina to the Prairies of the United States.
Cellulosic ethanol to power fertilizer demand

pstarr wrote:Yes. But the CO1/H20/Energy system requires concrete, steel, fossil fuels, and electricity.
Concrete and steel can (and are) recycled at the end of their life(steel is one of the most recycled materials in the world). The creation of synthetic fuels to replace/augment fossil fuels is the entire point here. As is consuming surplus electricity created by solar & wind.

pstarr wrote:My point is not that one is better than the other, but really both are loosers, not solutions. Neither will maintain our entropic, planet-destroying, consumer system, because either solution has untended consequences such as AGW, ozone depletion, erosion, water depletion, etc. etc.
Solar is a source of negative entropy to our planet and is harnessed by this process(assuming the electricity came from solar or wind sources like in the articles I linked to above). So entropy is actually addressed by this solution. This process is CO2 neutral. All of the CO2 burned during combustion is the same CO2 that was bound during the gas's creation. So AGW is not an issue. The water consumed during the gas's creation is recreated when the gas is combusted. The process is water neutral. Erosion is not an issue here, but it is for ethanol production(see above). I don't see how ozone depletion is a factor here. I am not seeing anything that would persuade me that this technology is a loser. Sure synthetic fuels are not a primary energy source, they are merely energy carriers like electricity is. No one has argued otherwise. That doesn't make it a looser anymore than electricity is a loser.

Primary energy
Primary energy is an energy form found in nature that has not been subjected to any conversion or transformation process. It is energy contained in raw fuels, and other forms of energy received as input to a system. Primary energy can be non-renewable or renewable.
The concept of primary energy is used in energy statistics in the compilation of energy balances, as well as in the field of energetics. In energetics, a primary energy source (PES) refers to the energy forms required by the energy sector to generate the supply of energy carriers used by human society.

Primary energy sources are transformed in energy conversion processes to more convenient forms of energy (that can directly be used by society), such as electrical energy, refined fuels, or synthetic fuels such as hydrogen fuel. In the field of energetics, these forms are called energy carriers and correspond to the concept of "secondary energy" in energy statistics.

Conversion to energy carriers (or secondary energy)
Energy carriers are energy forms which have been transformed from primary energy sources. Electricity is one of the most common energy carriers, being transformed from various primary energy sources such as coal, oil, natural gas, and wind.
According to the laws of thermodynamics, primary energy sources cannot be produced. They must be available to society to enable the production of energy carriers.
Primary energy
The oil barrel is half-full.
User avatar
kublikhan
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 4019
Joined: Tue 06 Nov 2007, 03:00:00
Location: Illinois

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby Ulenspiegel » Thu 25 Jul 2013, 07:33:04

pstarr wrote:
TheAntiDoomer wrote:You guys seem to be missing the point. The point of synthetic fuels is to efficiently convert solar energy into a liquid form. If you can do that even close to a 1 to 1 you have a HUGE winner, as it makes solar power an extremly powerful industry.
This makes little sense.

--close to 1 to 1 is not good enough. The industrial process should have a positive EROEI, or why bother. Throwing good energy away for bad energy makes no sense. Unless the process is incredibly cheap. Fischer-Tropf has been around for almost a century, yet has never panned out except in time of war.

--Unlike the this CO2 + H2O-perpetual-energy scheme, corn ethanol production has an positive energy return of 1.34 to 1. Yet it is not a HUGE winner, but rousing failure.


Ethanol production leads to a direct competition of food production and energy "production" as it is not really scalable due to the relatively poor energy yield of photosynthesis, here a PV system gives you two orders of magnitude more and can be run in deserts. The combination of PV with P2G is even with 40% conversion losses 60 times efficient per surface unit than ethanol production.

BTW: the 1:1.2 EROEI for ethanol is very optimistic and becomes pointless, when the input is done with oil or oil products.

The real disadvantage of P2G is simple economy: The chemical plant causes costs of around 5-7 cent/kWh in addition to the electricity (Fraunhofer), this means that this procedure is not relevant in the next two decades as long as crossborder transmission lines, pump storage, or compressed air storage are much cheaper. Only when long term storage is essential, this would be in a 80-100% renewable scenario, the P2G approach would perhaps makes sense.

However, most (mainstream) studies in Germany work without this technology. The field where I see the best chance of industrial scale application is the "upgrading" of bio gas, i.e. conversion of the CO2 into methane.
Ulenspiegel
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 260
Joined: Thu 04 Jul 2013, 02:15:29

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby Tanada » Thu 25 Jul 2013, 09:48:34

The whole point of manufacturing synthetic fuel isn't to have a storage form for diffuse sources, it is to gather diffuse sources into a usable product that can be integrated into the existing system for delivery and productive effect. You can have a TerraWatt Solar power plant but that won't deliver a semi load of frozen pizza's to my local grocery chain box store. If you convert that TW of electricity into X number of gallons of diesel fuel and put it in the network suddenly your solar power CAN fuel the delivery of the truck load of goods to the grocery store.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
User avatar
Tanada
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14060
Joined: Thu 28 Apr 2005, 02:00:00
Location: South West shore Lake Erie, OH, USA

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby pstarr » Thu 25 Jul 2013, 10:22:45

Tanada wrote:The whole point of manufacturing synthetic fuel isn't to have a storage form for diffuse sources, it is to gather diffuse sources into a usable product that can be integrated into the existing system for delivery and productive effect. You can have a TerraWatt Solar power plant but that won't deliver a semi load of frozen pizza's to my local grocery chain box store. If you convert that TW of electricity into X number of gallons of diesel fuel and put it in the network suddenly your solar power CAN fuel the delivery of the truck load of goods to the grocery store.
That's the point Tanada. The alt energy must be:

--inexpensive to produce, so that folks migrate over NOW, while the capital exists to develop the industry.
--of a nature that fits into the existing infrastructure.

Biofuels meet (somewhat) the second requirement (liquid fuels) but are not the right price. If they were, we would certainly plow every corner of the arable planet for our Sunday jaunt. They are only "somewhat" appropriate as most do not replicate petroleum precisely (ethanol ruins engines, biodiesel degrades, etc.) EV doesn't work because the US does not currently (and I contend will never install) the remote charging stations necessary to supply interstates, rural area, city streets, and apartment buildings with power. NG has similar constraints (no pipelines along interstates, rural areas, etc.) You can throw a can of liquid fuel in truck, but not NG or electricity

Wind Power-to-Gas (P2G) doesn't make a liquid fuel, only gas/storage material. See problems with NG. Hydrogen specifically has its own set of additional problems: the gas is diffuse and atomic, not molecular, in size. It wants to leak. I always liked Jeremy Rifkin's Solar Economy based on hydrogen fuel cell, local/distributed solar electrolysis of H2, Hypercars etc. but now I understand that the infrastructure is the chicken that the solar egg depends on. We would need to redesign and rebuild our gasoline/diesel infrastructure for these alt. energy plans. We don't now don't have the poltical will or money to attempt anything remotely useful. So sad :cry:
Haven't you heard? I'm a doomer!
pstarr
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 26332
Joined: Mon 27 Sep 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Behind the Redwood Curtain

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby kublikhan » Thu 25 Jul 2013, 10:55:26

There's a company in Texas that has a process to convert NG to gasoline which they claim is much cheaper and more efficient than Fischer-Tropf. They've had a successful demo plant up and running for awhile now and are currently trying to raise funds for a full scale commercial plant. If it takes off, maybe it would become economical to convert NG to gasoline?

A Texas company has developed gas-to-liquids (GTL) technology designed to convert methane to ethylene without using the Fischer Tropsch (FT) process. The firm claims that its GTL system can perform at a level of efficiency rivaling conventional methane conversion technologies. Synfuels' technology stems from a 1998 invention by researchers at Texas A&M University that converts natural gas to acetylene and then to ethylene.

"We can offer a service ... to 'handle' gas by converting it into gasoline." According to Synfuels, the gasoline blendstock boasts a research octane rating from 90 to 95.

Better Economics than FT?
Synfuels also contends that its technology overcomes a much lower economic threshold than FT. FT installations need natural gas feed rates of at least 300 million standard cubic feet per day (MMscf/d) to achieve cost-effectiveness, which suggests why there are only four GTL plants in the world built by Shell and Sasol, two in Qatar, and one each in South Africa and Malaysia, Peterson said.

"To be cost-effective, Synfuels installations must have gas feed rates of about 15 MMscf/d and on an equal product output basis, cost about one-third as much as an FT plant," Peterson noted. "Synfuels plant sizes can exceed 300 MMscf/d."

Raising Money for Commercial-Scale Plant
Synfuels International has deployed the GTL technology at its 35,000-SCFD demonstration plant near Bryan, Texas. The facility has operated continuously for two weeks as a fully integrated process. Peterson said the Dallas-based technology assessment engineering firm Baker and O'Brien has vetted the process technology. Although none of the technology has been deployed commercially to date, Synfuels is raising funds for a 140 MMscf/d GTL plant in Texas.
GTL Tech Converts Methane to Ethylene without Fischer Tropsch
The oil barrel is half-full.
User avatar
kublikhan
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 4019
Joined: Tue 06 Nov 2007, 03:00:00
Location: Illinois

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby Ulenspiegel » Fri 26 Jul 2013, 09:09:01

pstarr wrote:Wind Power-to-Gas (P2G) doesn't make a liquid fuel, only gas/storage material. See problems with NG. Hydrogen specifically has its own set of additional problems: the gas is diffuse and atomic, not molecular, in size. It wants to leak. I always liked Jeremy Rifkin's Solar Economy based on hydrogen fuel cell, local/distributed solar electrolysis of H2, Hypercars etc. but now I understand that the infrastructure is the chicken that the solar egg depends on. We would need to redesign and rebuild our gasoline/diesel infrastructure for these alt. energy plans. We don't now don't have the poltical will or money to attempt anything remotely useful. So sad :cry:


Sorry, that is wrong. There is no problem to power almost all kinds of ships, locomotives, cars or trucks with NG, in addition, the existing infrastructure (storage volume, pipelines) is already sufficient for this or can quite easily be improved, that is exactly the reason why in some discussion papers P2G got traction. Huge NG infrastructure is already there, hydrogen infrastructure not.

The basic problem is, that P2G is simply to expensive to substitute oil 1:1 in transport due to the inefficiency of ICEs. Therefore, the substitution of oil with electricity makes IMHO much more sense, it avoids the high losses due to carnor cycle, even if the hardware is still under development. An alternative could be to burn NG in fuel cells, this may be a quite clever idea as heating system for larger buildings (as first step).
Ulenspiegel
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 260
Joined: Thu 04 Jul 2013, 02:15:29

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby Ulenspiegel » Fri 26 Jul 2013, 09:16:13

Tanada wrote:The whole point of manufacturing synthetic fuel isn't to have a storage form for diffuse sources, it is to gather diffuse sources into a usable product that can be integrated into the existing system for delivery and productive effect. You can have a TerraWatt Solar power plant but that won't deliver a semi load of frozen pizza's to my local grocery chain box store. If you convert that TW of electricity into X number of gallons of diesel fuel and put it in the network suddenly your solar power CAN fuel the delivery of the truck load of goods to the grocery store.


That assumption is questionable:

1) The alternative to P2G is the direct use of electricty (with batteries) in cars. To produce NG or liquid fuel from electricity and burn it in ICEs with 20% efficiency is IMHO very stupid and we should foget this as soon as possibel. :-)

2) The discussion of P2G in Germany IS about long term storage in order to bridge the 15-20 foggy days in winter without wind and sun in a 100% renewable scenario because the German biomass potential can not cover both, the needed feedstock for chemical industry and electricity production.
Ulenspiegel
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 260
Joined: Thu 04 Jul 2013, 02:15:29

Re: CO2 + H2O + Energy = synthetic fuel

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Fri 26 Jul 2013, 09:25:02

Ever done the maths on what sort of battery it will take to push an 18 wheeler weighing 40 tons at highway speeds all day? Not much room left for anything else but batteries, then there are the materials involved- rare earth metals and lead.

Some years ago now Tanada converted me to a nuclear advocate. I know she has been pretty quiet on the topic since Fukushima, but I think her approach is still valid. Fukushima was an obviously utterly stupid place to put a reactor.
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 9045
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

PreviousNext

Return to Energy Technology

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests