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Incorporation of catalytic dehydrogenation into Fischer-Tropsch synthesis to lower carbon dioxide emissions

United States Patent

September 18, 2012
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
A method for producing liquid fuels includes the steps of gasifying a starting material selected from a group consisting of coal, biomass, carbon nanotubes and mixtures thereof to produce a syngas, subjecting that syngas to Fischer-Tropsch synthesis (FTS) to produce a hyrdrocarbon product stream, separating that hydrocarbon product stream into C1-C4 hydrocarbons and C5+ hydrocarbons to be used as liquid fuels and subjecting the C1-C4 hydrocarbons to catalytic dehydrogenation (CDH) to produce hydrogen and carbon nanotubes. The hydrogen produced by CDH is recycled to be mixed with the syngas incident to the FTS reactor in order to raise the hydrogen to carbon monoxide ratio of the syngas to values of 2 or higher, which is required to produce liquid hydrocarbon fuels. This is accomplished with little or no production of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas. The carbon is captured in the form of a potentially valuable by-product, multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNT), while huge emissions of carbon dioxide are avoided and very large quantities of water employed for the water-gas shift in traditional FTS systems are saved.
Huffman; Gerald P. (Lexington, KY)
The University of Kentucky Research Foundation (Lexington, KY)
12/ 790,353
May 28, 2010
This invention was made with government support under contract DE-FC26-05NT42456 awarded by U.S. Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in the invention.