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Open Access Catalytic Conversion of Methane to Methanol Using Cu-Zeolites

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The conversion of methane to value-added liquid chemicals is a promising answer to the imminent demand for fuels and chemical synthesis materials in the advent of a dwindling petroleum supply. Current technology requires high energy input for the synthesis gas production, and is characterized by low overall selectivity, which calls for alternative reaction routes. The limitation to achieve high selectivity is the high C–H bond strength of methane. High-temperature reaction systems favor gas-phase radical reactions and total oxidation. This suggests that the catalysts for methane activation should be active at low temperatures. The enzymatic-inspired metal-exchanged zeolite systems apparently fulfill this need, however, methanol yield is low and a catalytic process cannot yet be established. Homogeneous and heterogeneous catalytic systems have been described which stabilize the intermediate formed after the first C–H activation. The understanding of the reaction mechanism and the determination of the active metal sites are important for formulating strategies for the upgrade of methane conversion catalytic technologies.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: ETH Zurich, Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering, Wolfgang-Pauli-Strasse 10, CH-8093 Zurich, Switzerland 2: ETH Zurich, Institute for Chemical and Bioengineering, Wolfgang-Pauli-Strasse 10, CH-8093 Zurich, Switzerland. [email protected]

Publication date: September 1, 2012

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  • International Journal for Chemistry and Official Membership Journal of the Swiss Chemical Society (SCS) and its Divisions

    CHIMIA, a scientific journal for chemistry in the broadest sense, is published 10 times a year and covers the interests of a wide and diverse readership. Contributions from all fields of chemistry and related areas are considered for publication in the form of Review Articles and Notes. A characteristic feature of CHIMIA are the thematic issues, each devoted to an area of great current significance.

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