Rapid and Extended Analysis of Syngas using Micro GC Fusion

Shawn Wilson, INFICON (US)

In 2012, the World Bank estimated that 140 billion cubic meters (bcm) of the 3370 bcm of natural gas produced worldwide was flared. Flaring burns surplus gas and is detrimental to the environment, contributing over 350 million tons of CO2 in annual emissions. An alternative to flaring is to convert the associated natural gas into synthesis gas (syngas), which is an intermediate gas used to produce synthetic liquid fuel. Converting syngas to liquid chemicals through the Fischer-Tropsch (FT) process presents an economical and greener alternative to flaring.  Syngas is composed predominantly of hydrogen and carbon monoxide, though it may also contain carbon dioxide, nitrogen, methane, ethane, ethylene, or H2S in the high ppm to percent level.   After catalytic conversion, determining the syngas composition is a critical step before using the gas in any downstream process.  To ensure efficiency, the analysis of syngas must be analyzed quickly and accurately. Building on proven microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) technology, Micro GC Fusion is capable of providing rapid analysis of typical syngas components in a compact instrument.  A method equipped with temperature programming provides an area %RSD of less than 1.0% and retention time %RSD of less than 0.05% repeatability.  This accurate and repeatable analysis of syngas is performed in less than 50 seconds.  Additionally, Micro GC Fusion is capable of performing analyses on more complex samples including C4-C5 olefins, and C1-C12 alkanes.  This extended analysis of syngas is performed in less than 90 seconds.


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