(743e) Methane Coupling in Atmospheric Pressure Corona Discharge Microreactor
Adam Shareghi, Ian Reddick, Justin Pommerenck, Scott Harpool, Yu Miao, Yousef Alanazi, Alexandre Yokochi, Annette von Jouanne, Nick AuYeung, Goran Jovanovic
Methane-rich landfill biogas, agricultural gas and stranded natural gas from fracking are vast energy resources that remain largely untapped. Bringing this energy to market is uneconomical with conventional technology. Converting a percentage of this unused resource into an easily transportable form represents an economic opportunity.
Methane coupling using nonthermal plasmas in microscale reactors has been demonstrated. The high temperature electrons disrupt the stable carbon-hydrogen bonds of the methane and allow the fragmented species to polymerize into higher-order hydrocarbons that can be used as liquid fuels. Nonthermal plasmas enable this chemistry to occur at ambient temperatures and pressures thus making this technology economically attractive.
Developing nonthermal plasma reactors on the microfluidic scale reduces the required materials of construction and energy input. Maximal active volume can be achieved at these smaller scales as more reactant gas is forced to move in the vicinity of the high voltage electrodes. Development and optimization of this technology to produce liquid fuels is currently the goal of the study. This presentation will summarize recent developments in this area.