Application of CO2 removal to the Fischer-Tropsch process to produce transport fuel

In order to bring remote natural gas to market, conversion into a liquid form may be an alternative to piping it or shipping it by tanker. Gas-to-liquids (GTL) conversion, such as by the Fischer-Tropsch process (F-T), can produce a fuel which is suitable for use directly in the transport sector. The F-T process can be modified to incorporate CO2 removal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; between 17 and 25% of the carbon entering the process could be captured as CO2 (the rest being in the liquid product). In order to calibrate this opportunity, a techno-economic evaluation has been carried out of the conversion of natural gas to high-quality liquid transport fuel using F-T technology with CO2 capture. The results were then used to assess the “well-to-wheels” e missions of greenhouse gases from this and various other selected road-transport systems. F-T diesel could be accommodated in the existing distribution and vehicle fuelling infrastructure which would minimise the additional costs involved. As a means of exploiting remote natural gas as a transport fuel, the F-T diesel route with CO2 capture generates less greenhouse gas emissions than the alternative route where liquefied gas is shipped and compressed gas is supplied to the vehicles.