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New School of Chemistry publication describes a breakthrough chemical process

24 May 2024

A recent publication from the School of Chemistry describes a new chemical process that holds promise for decarbonising our energy infrastructure.

Recently-appointed Lecturer in Sustainable Materials in the School, Brendan Bulfin, is lead author of the paper “Countercurrent chemical looping for enhanced methane reforming with complete conversion and inherent CO2 separation”, which reports a laboratory demonstration of the concept. The experimental work was carried out at ETH Zurich.

The method could be used to convert both natural gas and biogas into more valuable chemicals and fuels. A major benefit of the new approach is that it separates carbon dioxide from other products; the high purity CO2 can then be captured or utilized. The reactor design is analogous to a countercurrent heat exchanger, but with chemicals rather than heat. This new chemical approach greatly improves the efficiency and reduces the energy needed compared to traditional approaches. Going forward, Dr. Bulfin plans to develop the process for applications in blue hydrogen production and the upgrading of biogas for sustainable fuel production.


School of Chemistry

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