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October 15th, 2013
Primus Green Energy of Hillsborough, NJ, celebrated the commissioning one of the first demonstration plants in the country to convert natural gas directly into drop-in, 93-octane gasoline, according a Chemical Engineering article. This demonstration plant will provide data for scaling up the process commercially, which Primus CEO Robert Johnsen says is expected to happen in mid-2014. Bechtel will help Primus build that 20 to 30 million gallon plant. Since other companies have made gasoline and diesel fuel from natural gas, or biomass and other nontraditional energy sources, Primus has concentrated on making that process more efficient.
The video in the right window explains Primus’ proprietary technology, which involves methanol synthesis from syngas in an initial step, followed by subsequent conversion of methanol to dimethyl ether in another reactor. The process then synthesizes and treats the gasoline. George Boyajian, VP for business development, said the Primus process has a conversion efficiency of 35%, which is more than 80% of the theoretical maximum, and the company is working to raise the efficiency.