WV Coal Member Meeting 2024 1240x200 1 1

Iron Aerogel & Xerogel Catalysts for Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis of Diesle Fuel - Energy & Fuels (ACS Publications)


The Abstract:

"Iron aerogels, potassium-doped iron aerogels, and potassium-doped iron xerogels have been synthesized and characterized and their catalytic activity in the Fischer−Tropsch (F-T) reaction has been studied. Iron aerogels and xerogels were synthesized by polycondensation of an ethanolic solution of iron(III) chloride hexahydrate with propylene oxide which acts as a proton scavenger for the initiation of hydrolysis and polycondensation. Potassium was incorporated in the iron aerogel and iron xerogel by adding aqueous K2CO3 to the ethanolic solutions of the Fe(III) precursor prior to addition of propylene oxide. Fischer−Tropsch activities of the catalysts were tested in a fixed bed reactor at a pressure of 100 psi with a H2:CO ratio of 2:1. Iron aerogels were found to be active for F-T synthesis, and their F-T activities increased on addition of a K containing promoter. Mo╠łssbauer spectroscopic data are consistent with an open, nonrigid iron(III) aerogel structure progressing to an iron carbide/metallic iron catalyst via agglomeration as the F-T synthesis proceeds in the course of a 35 h fixed bed reaction test."

We're just sending this along to you, as we have with some other quite technical publications from scholastic and professional journals, to verify that coal conversion to liquids (i.e. Fischer-Tropsch), is a quite real technology that is taken seriously by credible researchers - to the point of refining catalyst technologies for the process.

We had earlier reported that abundant Canadian nickel looked to be the most effective catalyst for converting coal-derived gasses into liquid fuels, via Fisher-Tropsch, but these academic researchers (from the University of Utah, for Pete's sake - what about WVU?) seem to think preparations made with iron might work better.

Pretty detailed stuff for a technology most people, in light of the failed Benwood CTL project, and others, seem to think doesn't really exist.