Cardiff University researchers lead on using gold as catalyst to convert natural gas to chemicals and fuels

January 6, 2022 |

In the UK, a simple, low-cost method of directly converting natural gas into useful chemicals and fuels, using the precious metal gold as a key ingredient, has been proposed by researchers at Cardiff University in collaboration with researchers in Lehigh University, U.S. and the National Centre for Magnetic Resonance in Wuhan, China. 

In a study published today in Nature Catalysis, the team led by researchers from the Cardiff Catalysis Institute has demonstrated, for the first time, the direct conversion of methane into methanol and acetic acid using a gold catalyst.

Up until now, this has only been achieved through indirect routes which include multiple steps that are highly energy consuming and very costly.

To achieve the creation of methanol and acetic acid the team reacted methane with oxygen in the presence of a catalyst made from gold and the zeolite ZSM-5.

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Category: Research

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