December 9, 2022

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Here's how they converted methane to methanol at low cost!  Finally, we have a way to combat the climate

Here’s how they converted methane to methanol at low cost! Finally, we have a way to combat the climate

Brazilian scientists performed a photo-oxidation reaction and converted methane into methanol at a very low energy cost. It is a real revolution, and according to the researchers, the best methanol conversion reaction has been achieved to date under ambient conditions (at a temperature of 25 degrees and a pressure of 1 bar). How did they do it?

Sao Paulo researchers published in chemical communication Describe the photooxidation of methane to methanol. This is a huge step forward in the fight against global warming, where methane is one of the most dangerous gases. Converting it to liquid methanol will not only reduce gas emissions into the atmosphere, but also provide us with a valuable resource for biodiesel production or in the chemical industry.

Read also: Methane converted to methanol. The Holy Grail of catalysis has been found

How was the reaction?What did the researchers do? First, they produced a photocatalyst for the reaction by synthesizing carbon nitride with basic transition metals (mainly copper). Thus, active visible light stimuli were created.

Then, photocatalysts were used in The reaction of methane with hydrogen peroxide. Methane is oxidized. The copper catalyst produces a large amount of liquid products, including methanol. According to the researchers, the reaction does not need to use a large amount of hydrogen peroxide, but rather a large amount of water.

Read also: They can convert methane to methanol. Everything is at room temperature

Methanol without much energy? It is now possible

The researchers add that the method uses little energy It produces large amounts of methanol with relative ease. Evo TeixeiraOne of the study’s co-authors commented on future research:

Our next steps include trying to better understand the active sites between them and their role in interaction. We also plan to use oxygen directly to produce hydrogen peroxide. If we succeed, the whole process will be safer and more economical.

Scientists have now used pure methane in the photo-oxidation reaction, but they will try to collect it from renewable sources such as with Biomass.

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