skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Conceptual process design and economics for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via indirect liquefaction of biomass through methanol/dimethyl ether intermediates

Abstract

This paper describes in detail one potential conversion process for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via indirect liquefaction of biomass. The processing steps of this pathway include the conversion of biomass to synthesis gas via indirect gasification, gas clean-up via reforming of tars and other hydrocarbons, catalytic conversion of syngas to methanol, methanol dehydration to dimethyl ether (DME), and the homologation of DME over a zeolite catalyst to high-octane gasoline-range hydrocarbon products. The current process configuration has similarities to conventional methanol-to-gasoline (MTG) technologies, but there are key distinctions, specifically regarding the product slate, catalysts, and reactor conditions. A techno-economic analysis is performed to investigate the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock. The design features a processing daily capacity of 2000 tonnes (2205 short tons) of dry biomass. The process yields 271 liters of liquid fuel per dry tonne of biomass (65 gal/dry ton), for an annual fuel production rate of 178 million liters (47 MM gal) at 90% on-stream time. The estimated total capital investment for an nth-plant is $438 million. The resulting minimum fuel selling price (MFSP) is $0.86 per liter or $3.25 per gallon in 2011 US dollars. A rigorous sensitivity analysis captures uncertainties in costs and plantmore » performance. Sustainability metrics for the conversion process are quantified and assessed. The potential premium value of the high-octane gasoline blendstock is examined and found to be at least as competitive as fossil-derived blendstocks. A simple blending strategy is proposed to demonstrate the potential for blending the biomass-derived blendstock with petroleum-derived intermediates. Published 2015. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA. Biofuels, Bioproducts and Biorefining published by Society of Industrial Chemistry and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [2];  [3];  [1];  [1]
  1. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
  2. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
  3. DWH Process Consulting LLC, Centennial, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Bioenergy Technologies Office (EE-3B)
OSTI Identifier:
1236955
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1243215
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-5100-65305; PNNL-SA-113776
Journal ID: ISSN 1932-104X
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC36-08GO28308; AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Biofuels, Bioproducts & Biorefining
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 10; Journal Issue: 1; Related Information: Biofuels, Bioproducts and Biorefining; Journal ID: ISSN 1932-104X
Publisher:
Wiley
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
09 BIOMASS FUELS; biomass; thermochemical conversion; indirect gasification; dimethyl ether homologation; high-octane gasoline; process design; techno-economic analysis; sustainability

Citation Formats

Tan, Eric C. D., Talmadge, Michael, Dutta, Abhijit, Hensley, Jesse, Snowden-Swan, Lesley J., Humbird, David, Schaidle, Joshua, and Biddy, Mary. Conceptual process design and economics for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via indirect liquefaction of biomass through methanol/dimethyl ether intermediates. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1002/bbb.1611.
Tan, Eric C. D., Talmadge, Michael, Dutta, Abhijit, Hensley, Jesse, Snowden-Swan, Lesley J., Humbird, David, Schaidle, Joshua, & Biddy, Mary. Conceptual process design and economics for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via indirect liquefaction of biomass through methanol/dimethyl ether intermediates. United States. doi:10.1002/bbb.1611.
Tan, Eric C. D., Talmadge, Michael, Dutta, Abhijit, Hensley, Jesse, Snowden-Swan, Lesley J., Humbird, David, Schaidle, Joshua, and Biddy, Mary. Wed . "Conceptual process design and economics for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via indirect liquefaction of biomass through methanol/dimethyl ether intermediates". United States. doi:10.1002/bbb.1611. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1236955.
@article{osti_1236955,
title = {Conceptual process design and economics for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via indirect liquefaction of biomass through methanol/dimethyl ether intermediates},
author = {Tan, Eric C. D. and Talmadge, Michael and Dutta, Abhijit and Hensley, Jesse and Snowden-Swan, Lesley J. and Humbird, David and Schaidle, Joshua and Biddy, Mary},
abstractNote = {This paper describes in detail one potential conversion process for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via indirect liquefaction of biomass. The processing steps of this pathway include the conversion of biomass to synthesis gas via indirect gasification, gas clean-up via reforming of tars and other hydrocarbons, catalytic conversion of syngas to methanol, methanol dehydration to dimethyl ether (DME), and the homologation of DME over a zeolite catalyst to high-octane gasoline-range hydrocarbon products. The current process configuration has similarities to conventional methanol-to-gasoline (MTG) technologies, but there are key distinctions, specifically regarding the product slate, catalysts, and reactor conditions. A techno-economic analysis is performed to investigate the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock. The design features a processing daily capacity of 2000 tonnes (2205 short tons) of dry biomass. The process yields 271 liters of liquid fuel per dry tonne of biomass (65 gal/dry ton), for an annual fuel production rate of 178 million liters (47 MM gal) at 90% on-stream time. The estimated total capital investment for an nth-plant is $438 million. The resulting minimum fuel selling price (MFSP) is $0.86 per liter or $3.25 per gallon in 2011 US dollars. A rigorous sensitivity analysis captures uncertainties in costs and plant performance. Sustainability metrics for the conversion process are quantified and assessed. The potential premium value of the high-octane gasoline blendstock is examined and found to be at least as competitive as fossil-derived blendstocks. A simple blending strategy is proposed to demonstrate the potential for blending the biomass-derived blendstock with petroleum-derived intermediates. Published 2015. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA. Biofuels, Bioproducts and Biorefining published by Society of Industrial Chemistry and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.},
doi = {10.1002/bbb.1611},
journal = {Biofuels, Bioproducts & Biorefining},
number = 1,
volume = 10,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Oct 28 00:00:00 EDT 2015},
month = {Wed Oct 28 00:00:00 EDT 2015}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 5 works
Citation information provided by
Web of Science

Save / Share:

Works referenced in this record:

Catalytic Co-Homologation of Alkanes and Dimethyl Ether and Promotion by Adamantane as a Hydride Transfer Co-Catalyst
journal, February 2011

  • Simonetti, Dante A.; Ahn, John H.; Iglesia, Enrique
  • ChemCatChem, Vol. 3, Issue 4, p. 704-718
  • DOI: 10.1002/cctc.201000383

Gas Conversion to Liquid Fuels and Chemicals: The Methanol Route‐Catalysis and Processes Development
journal, January 2009


Selective Homologation Routes to 2,2,3-Trimethylbutane on Solid Acids
journal, May 2009

  • Ahn, John H.; Temel, Burcin; Iglesia, Enrique
  • Angewandte Chemie International Edition, Vol. 48, Issue 21, p. 3814-3816
  • DOI: 10.1002/anie.200900541

Mechanistic details of acid-catalyzed reactions and their role in the selective synthesis of triptane and isobutane from dimethyl ether
journal, January 2011

  • Simonetti, Dante A.; Ahn, John H.; Iglesia, Enrique
  • Journal of Catalysis, Vol. 277, Issue 2, p. 173-195
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.jcat.2010.11.004