A Texas company has claimed of developing a new conversion method which is cheaper and cleaner one to create gasoline and other liquid fuels from natural gas. This method would render a way which is more economical to make use of natural-gas reserves which were difficult to develop due to small in size or located at far away places.
Synfuels International which is an American company based in Dallas, is working behind this technology. The company says that the process consists of just few steps. This decrease in the number of steps makes it far more efficient than other conventional techniques which are adopted in the Fischer-Tropsch process. By this process natural gas could be converted into syngas. Syngas is a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide. A catalyst used in this process, forces the carbon and hydrogen gas to rejoin resulting in the formation of other new compounds like alcohols and fuels.
Fisher-Tropsch process was first used In the World War II by Nazi Germany. They produced diesel by taking coal and coal-bed methane as a source material.
In a Synfuels gas-to-liquids (GTL) refinery natural gas is processed through number of steps to convert it into gasoline. This method is said to be having better overall efficiency. In the first step structure of natural gas is split by putting it under high temperatures to form acetylene, which is a simplest form of hydrocarbon. The next process includes a separate liquid-phase step. In this a proprietary catalyst is used which causes to convert 98 percent of the acetylene into ethylene. Ethylene is the most complex form of hydrocarbon. This ethylene is used to make several fuel products. The process of its conversion is easy at that stage. These end products include products like high-octane gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel. All of these products are absolutely free of sulfur.
This process has enabled us to produce a barrel of gasoline with a low cost than produced through Fischer-Tropsch process. This is said by Kenneth Hall, who is the member of the inventor team of this process. He also remained at a time the head of Texas A&M University’s department of chemical engineering.