China commences ethanol production equipment trials

In a groundbreaking development, China has commenced the trial operation of the world’s most substantial ethanol production equipment in Huaibei, Anhui Province. The facility, built under the auspices of Tanxin Technology Co., LTD., a subsidiary of the Huaibei Mining Group, boasts a staggering annual output capacity of 600,000 tonnes. Its remarkable feature lies in its advanced technology that converts coke oven gas into ethanol, thereby significantly enhancing the added value of coal and paving a low-carbon development path for the steel and petrochemical industries.

The technology, dubbed DMTE, was co-developed by the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics (DICP) under the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Shaanxi Yanchang Petroleum (Group) Co., Ltd. The process involves using synthesis gas, or syngas, as a raw material and entails the carbonylation of dimethyl ether followed by the hydrogenation of methyl acetate to produce absolute ethanol. The successful trial run at Tanxin Technology Co., LTD. has validated the advanced nature and dependability of the DMTE technology, as noted by general manager Li Wei.

China’s ethanol market exhibits a significant demand gap, with a shortfall approximately 10 million tonnes of fuel ethanol in 2022. The DMTE technology has been licensed to 13 sets of equipment, including two sets exported worldwide. The large-scale production of non-grain ethanol is deemed critical for China’s food security, energy security, and the security of its chemical and supply chain industries.

The ongoing trial represents a crucial stride in the direction of sustainable energy development. It is expected to facilitate the low-carbon integration and growth of steel, energy, environment, and other industries. The production capacity is anticipated to reach a whopping 395 million tons/year with the commissioning of units. This advancement underlines China’s commitment to innovative, low-carbon technologies that not only cater to the nation’s demands but also contribute to global sustainability efforts.

Tags: China, DMTE, Ethanol, Trials
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