Decreasing supplies of high quality crude oil and increasing demand for high quality distillates have motivated the interest in converting natural gas to liquid fuels, especially with the present boom in natural gas proven reserves. Nevertheless, one major issue is the curtailment of costs incurred in producing synthesis gas from natural gas, which account for approximately 60% of the costs used in producing liquid fuels. While there are three main routes to convert natural gas to syngas: steam reforming (SMR), partial Oxidation (POX) and auto-thermal reforming (ATR). Significant new developments and improvements in these technologies, established innovative processes to minimize greenhouse gases emission, minimize energy consumption, enhance syngas processes, adjust the desired H2/CO ratio and change the baseline economics. This article reviews the state of the art for the reforming of natural gas to synthesis gas taking into consideration all the new innovations in both processes and catalysis.
The improvement of hydrogen concentration in the obtained syngas during methane dry reforming is strongly demanded. Additionally, enhancement of CO2 and CH4 conversions has been of high preference. In line with these aims, this research work studies the impact of incorporating lanthanum metal either as a catalytic promoter or as a cosupport, on the efficiency of the reforming process. Two percentages namely 2.5 and 5 wt% were added to a catalyst composed of Ni(10%)–Zr(90%). Thus, four catalytic composites for methane dry reforming were produced. The prepared composites were characterized using XRD, N2‐physisorption, HR‐TEM, TPR, and Raman spectrometer. The catalytic performance and H2/CO ratio were deteriorated as a result of using lanthanum as a promoter, when compared to the nonpromoted zirconia‐supported Ni catalyst. However, using La as a cosupport showed a strong positive effect on reactants' conversions, the resultant H2/CO ratio and H2 yield%. The most active catalyst in this work was Ni/5La‐ZrO2 catalyst; it showed 73% of hydrogen yield and syngas with H2/CO molar ratio of 1.61 which can be used as feed gas in the Fischer–Tropsch process for the production petroleum distillates.
The usage of marine macroalgae (i.e. seaweeds) as feedstock for bioethanol; an alternative and/or complimentary to petro-fuel, would act as triple fact solution; bioremediation process for ecosystem, renewable energy source and economy savings.
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