December 2001

Trends and Resources

HP Impact: Gas-to-liquids: much smoke, little fire

The initial gas-to-liquids (GTL) complexes implemented in the 1980sand early 1990s were not commercially successful for a number ofreasons - the main one was that they were far too expensive (Table1)...

Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

The initial gas-to-liquids (GTL) complexes implemented in the 1980s and early 1990s were not commercially successful for a number of reasons - the main one was that they were far too expensive (Table 1). None of these GTL pioneers fared well. The plant at Montunui, New Zealand, designed to produce gasoline via methanol (with Mobil's zeolite catalyst) was soon turned into a methanol plant. Both the South African and Malaysian complexes were plagued by operational problems. An explosion in the air separation unit at Bintulu, Malaysia, in 1997 further damaged the already tarnished GTL image. And the technology's prohibitive investment costs stifled future GTL developments. In st

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