Catalytic methane synthesis can extend hydrocarbon supply

Despite the wide disparity of views among experts about remaining recoverable hydrocarbon resources and the timing of peak production of conventional reserves, certain trends are not in dispute: Crude liquid petroleum production will yield increasingly heavy crudes.The demand for natural gas will increase faster than the demand for other energy resources.A process able to extend hydrocarbon supply by capitalizing on these trends is conversion of petroleum resid or heavy crude oil to methane by reaction with steam. The process discussed here is suitable for conversion of any heavy hydrocarbon liquid feed, including atmospheric or vacuum resids, FCC or coker fractionator bottoms, steam crac...

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