Synthetic Methanol (CH3OH) refers to methanol that has been synthesized from natural gas or gasified coal. The feed gas firstly goes through steam reforming to produce synthesis gas, which contains mainly hydrogen(H2), carbon monoxide(CO) and carbon dioxide(CO2). The carbon monoxide is then reacted with hydrogen over a catalyst to produce methanol. Four process steps are required to produce synthetic methanol using the catalytic steam reforming method: 1) feed gas desulfurization, 2) catalytic steam reforming, 3) methanol synthesis, and 4) methanol purification.
The largest use of methanol by far is in making other chemicals, about 40% of methanol is converted to formaldehyde. Methanol is also widely used in methanol to gasoline production.
Critical Control of Process Gas
By measuring carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) after steam reforming to monitor the reaction and condition of the catalyst.
By measuring feedstock syngas compositions before the synthesizing tower to control the process of methanol synthesis.
Challenge of Instrumentation
The most used technologies for Syngas analysis are infrared combined with thermal conductivity, or a standalone GC. The infrared method is sensitive to the presence of water vapor in the syngas, and requires periodic calibration. The GC method is not continuous analysis with comparatively slow response, and operated only in a limited temperature range less than 100 °C and greater than -50°C. GC requires periodic calibration and maintenance.
Syngas analysis is satisfied by an affordable analyzer, which combined most reliable TDL technology with thermal conductivity, truly continuous real-time analysis and interference free. Modular design of the 4 components CO, CO2, CH4, H2, any combination is selectable to minimize cost of ownership.
Raw syngas (outlet of steam reforming)
Syngas (inlet of synthesizing tower)
Gas holder (gasified coal based )
NOTES: Listed are typical data FPI experienced and backed by field references. Alternate gases and ranges may be available or customizable on request.