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Electrically heated catalytic reforming reactors

Project description

Building biogas reactors to make cleaner synthetic fuels

Using renewable power sources for the industrial production of chemicals from renewable carbon sources could reduce CO2 emissions significantly. The EU-funded eQATOR project plans to show how biogas could play such a role, by developing scalable catalytic reactor technology for the conversion of biogas to syngas. The reactor will be electrically powered and more efficient than existing tech, enabling conversion into higher-value products such as methanol, hydrogen, and synthetic fuels. The efficiency gains will be demonstrated by electrically heating the catalyst, either by resistive or microwave heating. Implementation of the eQATOR technology is estimated to decrease life-cycle CO2 emissions for syngas production by 60-80 % and save from 7 Mt CO2/year in 2030 to 45 Mt CO2/year in 2045.


Process electrification and use of renewable resources for the production of chemicals can have a huge impact on climate change.
Biogas is a particularly attractive renewable carbon source for decentralized production of chemicals due to its huge current production capacity and opportunities for growth. In parallel, methanol is an important base chemical with a huge and growing market size, produced mainly from fossil resources today.
In this context, eQATOR aims to demonstrate in an industrially relevant environment (TRL6) scalable, electrically-heated catalytic reactor technologies that will allow conversion of biogas into syngas with improved efficiency compared to the state-of-art, bridging biogas production with downstream conversion technology into higher-added value products such as methanol, fuels and hydrogen. The central innovation in eQATOR is the integrated development of catalysts and reactors, and two different, yet complementary, electric heating technologies, resistive and microwave heating, leading to disruptive electrically-heated reactor technologies for syngas production. eQATOR will help transform syngas production from large-volume reactors with fired burners to renewable heated and compact reactors (up to 90% size reduction of total reactor unit and 50-75% reduction in catalyst volume), providing significant benefits from process intensification. Implementation of eQATOR technology will decrease life-cycle CO2 emissions for syngas production by 60-80% and save from 7 Mt CO2/year in 2030, up to around 45 Mt CO2/year in 2045.
The experimental development is supported by a broad integrated sustainability assessment including techno-economic feasibility, environmental footprint and impact on society and rural development.
The eQATOR consortium provides complementary world class expertise along the entire value chain and strong industrial commitment to maximise wide exploitation of the results through industrial implementation.



Net EU contribution
€ 1 754 390,00
Strindvegen 4
7034 Trondheim

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Norge Trøndelag Trøndelag
Activity type
Research Organisations
Other funding
€ 0,00

Participants (13)

Partners (1)