Indonesia’s vast natural gas reserves in the East Natuna Islands amount to an impressive 46 TSCF. However, a significant hurdle exists in the form of exceptionally high CO2 content, reaching a staggering 70%-v, which complicates the implementation of natural gas processing technologies. Overcoming this challenge requires addressing issues related to the potential formation of carbon deposits that could clog the active catalyst sites and disrupt gas flow within the reactor. Such complications can have adverse effects on hydrogen productivity and reactor operations. This research delves into the development of nanocatalysts within two dedicated reactor units, each aligned with the thematic field of nanotechnology.
The first reactor is purposefully designed to convert high CO2-content natural gas from Natuna through a dry reforming process, ultimately producing hydrogen using nickel-based nanocatalysts. This innovative approach seeks to address the issue of high CO2 content, which is notorious for hindering traditional processing methods.
The second reactor aims to boost hydrogen productivity by utilizing copper-based nanocatalysts in a water gas shift reaction. The objective here is to shift the equilibrium of the gas-phase reaction towards increased hydrogen production. Additionally, to facilitate this process, hydrogen will be separated using palladium-based membranes.
This research places a strong emphasis on developing creative and innovative nanocatalyst structures to tackle the catalytic challenges in both dry reforming and water gas shift reactions, as well as addressing hydrogen separation concerns. Nanocatalysts represent a unique class of catalysts composed of nanoparticle materials engineered at the nanometer scale (1–100 nm).
Hydrogen is anticipated to play a pivotal role in the transition to cleaner energy and holds significant importance in the global energy system’s decarbonization. There are four compelling reasons for its prominence:
Hydrogen is known for its ability to produce energy without direct CO2 emissions, making it a promising choice for sustainable energy solutions.
With an energy density of approximately 120 MJ/kg (2.5 times higher than natural gas), hydrogen offers an efficient means of energy storage and utilization.
Hydrogen is one of the most abundant elements in nature, though it is not readily available in its free form. Its versatility makes it suitable for various energy applications.
Given the fluctuating nature of renewable energy sources like solar and wind, hydrogen’s capacity to serve as an effective, uninterrupted energy storage solution is a significant advantage. Converting renewable energy into hydrogen through electrolysis allows for extended storage and stabilizes energy networks.
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