Direct Synthesis Of Hydrocarbons From Co-Electrolysis In Micro Tubular Reactor


Reference #: 01193


The University of South Carolina is offering licensing opportunities for a technology that directly synthesizes hydrocarbons from co-electrolysis in a micro tubular reactor.




The widespread use of fossil fuel has led to the extensive emission of greenhouse gas (CO2) and a series of environmental problems. Therefore, significant attention has been paid to the reduction of atmospheric CO2 concentration and re-utilization of CO2. Solid oxide electrolysis cells (SOECs) electrochemically convert CO2 and H2O to syngas (a mixture of H2 and CO), which can be used as feedstock through the Fischer-Tropsch (F-T) process to produce liquid synthetic fuel that can be easily stored and transported using the existing infrastructure. Therefore, the integration of SOEC and F-T reactors in a single unit provides not only scalable energy storage, but also a solution to produce chemicals or fuel with recycled CO2. However, integration of both processes has significant technical challenges due to the differences in operating conditions. The normal operating temperature is between 600 degrees C and 1000 degrees C for SOEC and 200 degrees C to 500 degrees C for the F-T process. In this invention, the two processes are combined in a single device, simplifying the hydrocarbon production process. The micro tubular reactor made this possible because the existence of a temperature gradient along the micro tubular reactor provides favorable temperature conditions for both processes.


Invention Description:


The subject invention is a promising technology that utilizes H2O and CO2 to produce hydrocarbons directly. It also provides an alternative approach for storage of electrical energy, achieving a carbon neutral sustainable energy supply in the process.


Potential Applications:


Micro tubular reactors that can provide high volumetric factor for electrolysis process and F-T process, resulting in high CO2 conversion rate and high yield of hydrocarbons.


Advantages and Benefits:


1.       Solid oxide electrolysis cell (SOEC) and Fischer–Tropsch (F-T) reactors are combined in a single device, simplifying the production process of hydrocarbon fuels from carbon dioxide.

2.       The technology converts CO2 to hydrocarbons directly. The CO2 conversion rates and the hydrocarbon yield rates are both high.

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Technology Commercialization
University of South Carolina
Fanglin Chen
Libin Lei
Tong Liu
Shumin Fang
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