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Title: Bioconversion of natural gas to liquid fuel: Opportunities and challenges

Abstract

Natural gas is a mixture of low molecular weight hydrocarbon gases that can be generated from either fossil or anthropogenic resources. Although natural gas is used as a transportation fuel, constraints in storage, relatively low energy content (MJ/L), and delivery have limited widespread adoption. Advanced utilization of natural gas has been explored for biofuel production by microorganisms. In recent years, the aerobic bioconversion of natural gas (or primarily the methane content of natural gas) into liquid fuels (Bio-GTL) by biocatalysts (methanotrophs) has gained increasing attention as a promising alternative for drop-in biofuel production. Methanotrophic bacteria are capable of converting methane into microbial lipids, which can in turn be converted into renewable diesel via a hydrotreating process. In this paper, biodiversity, catalytic properties and key enzymes and pathways of these microbes are summarized. Bioprocess technologies are discussed based upon existing literature, including cultivation conditions, fermentation modes, bioreactor design, and lipid extraction and upgrading. This review also outlines the potential of Bio-GTL using methane as an alternative carbon source as well as the major challenges and future research needs of microbial lipid accumulation derived from methane, key performance index, and techno-economic analysis. An analysis of raw material costs suggests that methane-derived dieselmore » fuel has the potential to be competitive with petroleum-derived diesel. (C) 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc.« less

Authors:
; ; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E)
OSTI Identifier:
1211016
DOE Contract Number:  
0670-5169
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Biotechnology Advances
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 32; Journal Issue: 3; Journal ID: ISSN 0734-9750
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Fei, Q, Guarnieri, MT, Tao, L, Laurens, LML, Dowe, N, and Pienkos, PT. Bioconversion of natural gas to liquid fuel: Opportunities and challenges. United States: N. p., 2014. Web. doi:10.1016/j.biotechadv.2014.03.011.
Fei, Q, Guarnieri, MT, Tao, L, Laurens, LML, Dowe, N, & Pienkos, PT. Bioconversion of natural gas to liquid fuel: Opportunities and challenges. United States. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biotechadv.2014.03.011
Fei, Q, Guarnieri, MT, Tao, L, Laurens, LML, Dowe, N, and Pienkos, PT. 2014. "Bioconversion of natural gas to liquid fuel: Opportunities and challenges". United States. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biotechadv.2014.03.011.
@article{osti_1211016,
title = {Bioconversion of natural gas to liquid fuel: Opportunities and challenges},
author = {Fei, Q and Guarnieri, MT and Tao, L and Laurens, LML and Dowe, N and Pienkos, PT},
abstractNote = {Natural gas is a mixture of low molecular weight hydrocarbon gases that can be generated from either fossil or anthropogenic resources. Although natural gas is used as a transportation fuel, constraints in storage, relatively low energy content (MJ/L), and delivery have limited widespread adoption. Advanced utilization of natural gas has been explored for biofuel production by microorganisms. In recent years, the aerobic bioconversion of natural gas (or primarily the methane content of natural gas) into liquid fuels (Bio-GTL) by biocatalysts (methanotrophs) has gained increasing attention as a promising alternative for drop-in biofuel production. Methanotrophic bacteria are capable of converting methane into microbial lipids, which can in turn be converted into renewable diesel via a hydrotreating process. In this paper, biodiversity, catalytic properties and key enzymes and pathways of these microbes are summarized. Bioprocess technologies are discussed based upon existing literature, including cultivation conditions, fermentation modes, bioreactor design, and lipid extraction and upgrading. This review also outlines the potential of Bio-GTL using methane as an alternative carbon source as well as the major challenges and future research needs of microbial lipid accumulation derived from methane, key performance index, and techno-economic analysis. An analysis of raw material costs suggests that methane-derived diesel fuel has the potential to be competitive with petroleum-derived diesel. (C) 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc.},
doi = {10.1016/j.biotechadv.2014.03.011},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/1211016}, journal = {Biotechnology Advances},
issn = {0734-9750},
number = 3,
volume = 32,
place = {United States},
year = {2014},
month = {5}
}