With funding from ERA, the University of California Riverside (UCR) created an innovative catalyst to be used in the conversion of CO2 and Methane (CH4) to produce methanol—a valuable fuel and intermediary chemical. This catalyst makes improvements on catalysts currently available, but still can be adopted for use by conventional processes currently in operation. This minimizes much of the technical and economic risk for the project as it reaches commercialization.
Using a new, efficient catalyst, UCR’s project combines CO2 and CH4 into synthesis gas. This gas can then be converted into methanol using existing conventional technology. The pathway is a thermochemical process similar to other technologies; however, it is unique in that the catalyst has a superior thermal stability comparatively.