BASF and BSE to Convert Excess Current to Methanol

29.08.2017 -

BASF and bse Engineering have signed an exclusive agreement under which the German chemical major will provide customized catalysts for a new energy storage process, ultimately producing methanol.

The process is said to offer an economically viable method of transforming the excess current generated from renewable energy sources and carbon dioxide (CO2) from industrial production into methanol in small-scale, delocalized plants.

The excess current will produce hydrogen via discontinuous electrolysis. In a second step, methanol will be produced from CO2 and hydrogen, leading to a valorizing of excess current and CO2 off-stream gas. BASF’s catalysts will be used for the second-stage methanol synthesis step, having been further tuned and adapted for the process.

“After four years of developing the global process concept, we are now ready to enter the licensing phase of this process, with construction of the first plants starting soon,” said Christian Schweitzer, managing director of bse Engineering.

When using wind or solar power, excess current can be generated at times when consumers do not need it. The effective usage of this excess is a decisive factor in making power production from renewable sources economically feasible.