WV Coal Member Meeting 2024 1240x200 1 1

CO2-to-Methane Background Info

We're only sending it along since it provides, via bibliography, documentation that confirms public statements made not long ago by Nobel winner George Olah that the industrial synthesis of Methanol from Carbon Dioxide had been practiced in Europe all the way back in the 1920's - concurrent with the development in Germany of Coal-to-oil industries.
The CO2 for the methanol synthesis in the '20's, by BASF and others - which proceeded by the way through the 1940's, and in other places into the 1960's - might have been made deliberately by the combustion of Coal; that, even though as indicated herein - and in some other places - at least supplemental Hydrogen was made by the electrolysis of water.
That water electrolysis for Hydrogen made the CO2-to-Methanol processes only marginally economical and definitely not competitive, at that time and generally speaking, with making Methanol from natural gas or petroleum.
However, as is emphasized, and as we've attempted to emphasize in some CoalTL reports, new technologies for extracting H2 from water, such as solar water splitting techniques, now make CO2-to-Methanol very feasible.
Further, as confirmed, the CO2-to-Methanol reaction - and, as we've documented via CoalTL, any following Methanol-to-Gasoline reaction (ExxonMobil MTG(r) for one example) - is exothermic, and heat energy can be recovered to help economize the Hydrogen extraction processes.
Electronic links to the source documents aren't available, but, we might treat more of the Olah literature in future CoalTL reports, and wanted to confirm some of what he says about how long CO2-to-Methanol pathways have been both known and even practiced.
Further, now Doctor Atul Baban Bansode, who authored this thesis, and the universities involved, have proceeded to further develop the concepts embodied in it, and full presentations of their CO2 utilization technologies, for the production of Methanol and other commodities, are becoming available/accessible, and we will be treating some of them in future reports. Concerning this thesis, presuming no one wants to plod through all of it:    
In Chapter 1, on Page 6, we read: "Due to the serious limitations of the hydrogen economy, a promising alternative has been proposed and named as “methanol economy”(11). Therein, CO2 captured from the atmosphere or from the industrial sources could be hydrogenated to methanol and methanol-derived chemicals using hydrogen obtained from renewable energy sources as photolytic water splitting (Figure 1.3). This approach will help to achieve two goals; recycling of carbon which is “lost” in CO2 and converting volatile hydrogen gas to a convenient, safe liquid, easy to handle and transport"; and, further discussion centering around page 17 confirms and documents that Methanol was being produced via the hydrogenation of Carbon Dioxide in Europe as early as the 1920's, and proceeded through the 1940's.