RITE and three national institutes of Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) have been jointly developing a CO2 mitigation system in “Project of Chemical CO2 Fixation and Utilization Using Catalytic Hydrogenation” since 1990. A conceptual total system of the project is composed of the separation/recovery via membrane separation of a large amounts of CO2 emitted from stationary sources such as power plant, iron-making plants, chemical plans and so on, H2 production by water electrolysis, methanol synthesis from CO2 and H2, and of the transportation of the methanol produced to the sites for energy consumption and/or chemical production.
An application of the system to a 1,000 MW coal fired power plant could recover 470 ton/h of CO2 and produce 323 ton/h of methanol. If the methanol produced is used for a power plant in Japan, the energy efficiency and the CO2 reduction rate of the system could be estimated to be around 30%, 36% respectively.
RITE and NIRE previously developed Cu/ZnO-based multicomponent catalysts containing two or three metal oxides for methanol synthesis from CO2 and H21,2,3). In the present study, our group has examined the long term stability of the catalyst in methanol synthesis. Furthermore, we have investigated the methanol synthesis over the multicomponent catalysts by using a reactor with a recycling equipment for unreacted gases. The present investigations made clear that the catalyst developed are highly active (>600 g-MeOH/kg-cat h) and selective (> 99.9%) and that the purity of the refined methanol is 99.9% or more. The methanol produced has been used tentatively for a methanol fuel test car.