Using microbes to convert coal to fuel gas

Perspective article in Science, Vol. 354, Issue. 6309, pp. 184, “A microbial route from coal to gas”

 

Summary of article: An interesting article outlining the conceptual basis of microbes mediated conversion of coal into methane, a fuel gas, which is an analog of the more commonly encountered process where microorganisms digest waste carbonaceous materials into methane and carbon dioxide in anaerobic wastewater treatment. While the approach is interesting from the contemporary perspective of turning solid fuel into gaseous fuel, it is also an interesting contrast to the conventional Fischer Tropsch’s process of turning coal into synthesis gas prior to final conversion into liquid fuels such as diesel. Besides the wanted fuel, natural gas, the article also details the route by which methanogens convert methoxylated coal compounds into methane, which is a less well known route worthy of investigation.

 

Link to original article: http://science.sciencemag.org/content/354/6309/184

 

Category: Interesting scientific articles, water treatment, environmental engineering, biochemistry,

Tags: methanogenesis, methane, coal, synthesis gas, methoxylated coal compounds, microorganisms, methanogens,

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