China – The world’s first commercial scale CO2-to-methanol facility has started operations in Anyang, Henan Province, China.
The facility is the first of its kind in the world to create methanol at this scale from waste carbon dioxide and hydrogen gases. Methanol is a valuable fuel and chemical feedstock.
The Emissions-to-Liquids (ETL) technology, created by Carbon Recycling International (CRI) and initially demonstrated in Iceland, serves as the foundation for the plant’s manufacturing process. The new facility can remove more than 60,000 cars from the road’s worth of carbon dioxide emissions annually, or 160,000 tonnes.
The custom-built CRI reactor, which uses specialized catalysts to transform the carbon and hydrogen feed gases into low carbon-intensity methanol, is at the center of the process. A fully loaded Boeing 737 would weigh about 84 tonnes, which is about how much the entire unit weighs. The distillation column, which is just under 70 meters tall, and a specialized gas compressor are both connected to the reactor, which is installed in a customized steel frame.
The ETL method produces liquid methanol from carbon dioxide that is recovered from current lime production emissions and hydrogen that is recovered from coke-oven gas by using emissions that would have otherwise been released into the atmosphere.