China: Specialised Technology BASF, Sichuan Lutianhua Collaborate for Developing DME Production Facility
Once complete, the project is expected to reduce carbon emissions and increase energy efficiency in producing dimethyl ether from synthesis gas. Under the terms of the agreement, Lutianhua will invest in and construct the unit by making use of the breakthrough technology co-developed by BASF and Linde.
China – BASF and Sichuan Lutianhua Co. have recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to co-develop a pilot production plant. The aim of the project is to significantly reduce carbon emissions and increase energy efficiency in producing dimethyl ether (DME) from synthesis gas (syngas), compared with the traditional process. DME is a methanol equivalent and can be used as an intermediate to produce lower olefins such as ethylene and propylene. Currently, DME is produced via methanol as an intermediate from syngas.
Under the terms of the MOU, Lutianhua will invest in and build the plant using breakthrough technology co-developed by BASF and Linde over the past few years. BASF will supply new, high-performance catalyst systems that enable one-step conversion of syngas to DME and Linde will provide its newly-developed process design and engineering for direct DME synthesis. The pilot plant is scheduled to be built in 2020. The cooperation has been facilitated by an open innovation platform, newly established by the China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Federation (CPCIF).
“The open innovation platform is designated to promote cooperation among industry leaders for technological breakthroughs and industrial transformation,” said Li Shousheng, chairman of CPCIF, at the signing ceremony.