Solar hybrid fuel production from natural gas using concentrated solar thermal energy in Australia was studied, assuming that 54.6MW/(one unit of solar farm) of the concentrated solar thermal energy is used for the endothermic process of stream reforming (solar steam reforming; SSR) with total solar energy conversion efficiency of 45.5% (120MW of heliostat field; one unit of solar farm). With 23 units of the solar farm, natural gas of 2516t/d can be reformed by the SSR. To ship the product fuel to Japan by existing tankers, the syngas (CO + 3H2) produced by the SSR is separated into one mole of H2 (375t/d) and the mixed gas of one mole of CO and two moles of H2 which is converted to one mole of methanol (6000t/d) to be shipped by existing tankers. The one mole of H2 will be used in Australia as the H2 fuel with 25% solar share (CO2 reduction). To improve cost barrier between oil and the methanol produced by SSR, the CO2 zero emission process of the combined process of SSR and AT (auto-thermal process) is proposed as the one whose methanol cost can be competitive with oil, when carbon tax is introduced. By shipping the methanol produced by the CO2 zero emission process of the combined process of SSR-AT (economically feasible), we can reduce CO2 emission by co-firing coal and methanol at coal-firing power stations in Japan. In this system, an excess H2 fuel with solar energy is produced, and can be used in Australia.
Production of Solar Hybrid Fuels of DME, Methanol and H2 in Australia and Shipping to Japan
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Tamaura, Y, Kaneko, H, Fuse, A, & Ishihara, H. "Production of Solar Hybrid Fuels of DME, Methanol and H2 in Australia and Shipping to Japan." Proceedings of the ASME 2005 International Solar Energy Conference. Solar Energy. Orlando, Florida, USA. August 6–12, 2005. pp. 189-191. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/ISEC2005-76152
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