Conversion of CO2 to Alkyl Carbonates Using Ethylene Oxide as Feedstock Email Page
Print This Page
Performer:  E3TEC Service, LLC Location:  Clarksville, Maryland
Project Duration:  02/17/2015 – 06/10/2018 Award Number:  SC0013233
Technology Area:  Carbon Use and Reuse Total Award Value:  $1,149,063
Key Technology:  Chemical Conversion DOE Share:  $1,149,063
Performer Share:  $0

MSU’s pilot-scale reactive distillation columns
MSU’s pilot-scale reactive distillation columns

Project Description

E3Tec Service, LLC, in partnership with Michigan State University (MSU), is advancing an innovative approach for converting captured carbon dioxide (CO2) into high-value industrial chemicals, specifically dimethyl carbonate (DMC) and monoethylene glycol (MEG), using their patented heat-integrated reactive distillation (HIRD) process. The process uses captured CO2 as a primary feedstock and methanol and ethylene oxide as secondary feedstocks for the co-production of DMC and MEG. The HIRD-based process, integrating a distillation column with a series of side reactors and pervaporation membranes, is a transformative technology that has enhanced energy efficiency and reduced capital costs compared to current commercial processes for manufacturing alkyl carbonates and glycols. Researchers at MSU are using lab-scale plug-flow reactors to test kinetic parameters of the conversion process and measure catalyst stability. The kinetic parameters will be incorporated into E3Tec’s process model and used to predict the performance of the pilot-scale side reactors. A pilot-scale integrated unit will be designed, assembled, and tested to validate the process model. Several process configurations for a full-scale DMC/MEG plant will be analyzed once the model is validated. The team will verify the concept of integrating this process with a coal-fired power plant, evaluating the CO2 purity and potential for CO2 utilization from three primary sources of CO2. An implementation plan for an 8,000 tons/year pre-commercial plant will also be completed.

Project Benefits

The energy-efficient HIRD-based process for the co-production of high-value chemicals offsets the cost of capturing CO2. Converting CO2 into the marketable liquid products DMC and MEG provides a viable alternative to transporting and storing CO2. Completion of this project will make progress in advancing the technology to commercialization stage.

Presentations, Papers, and Publications

Contact Information

Federal Project Manager Isaac Aurelio:
Technology Manager Lynn Brickett:
Principal Investigator Chandrakant B. Panchal: