US: scientists develop carbon to syngas process for fossil fuel plants

The technique makes turning the waste into a useful product more feasible by reducing temperature and pressure requirements.

Syngas is an intermediate material before being refined into end-use products like synthetic natural gas and methanol.

Researchers from the Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory used switchable polarity solvents (liquids that switch polarity in the presence of a chemical agent) to make CO2 more soluble, something that is usually impossible at lower temperatures, according to Phys.org. This streamlines the process for electrochemical conversion into syngas.

The team has filed a provisional patent for the technology.

It is hoped that the process can be applied on an industrial scale, outside of lab environments, to make it economically viable.

It’s hoped that if the process can be applied to an industrial scale, syngas could be produced at sufficient quantities to become economically viable.

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