SOURCE: Zeus Development Corporation

Zeus Development Corporation

February 07, 2012 15:43 ET

UPDATE: ExxonMobil, Synfuels Int'l Added to Zeus North American Gas-to-Liquids Seminar

HOUSTON, TX--(Marketwire - Feb 7, 2012) - Speakers from two key GTL technology suppliers -- Mitch Hindman, licensing manager at ExxonMobil Research & Engineering, and Edward Peterson, chief engineer at Synfuels International, have jointed the program for Zeus Development's second annual seminar on North American gas-to-liquids (GTL), to take place March 7 in downtown Houston. Both companies purport to have developed alternatives to Fischer-Tropsch process technology, which is an essential step in converting natural gas into diesel and other petroleum products. Plants based on Fischer-Tropsch tend be massive, requiring access to the largest gas fields. The conference will examine whether smaller modular plants can be competitive as well as consider other process avenues such as the ones being presented by ExxonMobil and Synfuels International.

"These two companies intend to bring innovative and unique routes to GTL conversion," said Chris Cothran, research analyst, Zeus Syngas Refining Report. "Their addition gives us six process-technology representatives, including Sasol, CompactGTL, Velocys and LanzaTech, on the program, each of which proposes to convert abundant natural gas into premium fuels and chemicals."

The seminar will examine the possibilities of converting North American gas into premium fuels and products that can be sold through established infrastructure. GTL projects have grown more numerous in North America since Zeus' meeting last year. Projects, prospects and technologies that may take North American GTL to reality will be up for debate.

ExxonMobil has decades of operating experience with methanol-to-gasoline (MTG) conversion, having operated a plant in New Zealand. The MTG process dehydrates methanol made from natural gas. The super major is developing a second-generation MTG process, along with a new catalyst, planned for facilities in China and the U.S. It intends to use several different feedstocks, including coal, biomass and natural gas.

Likewise, Synfuels International has achieved operating status at its GTL demonstration facility in Robertson County, Texas. The company's technology uses a liquid-phase hydrogenation process for the production of ethylene and gasoline blendstock. It is designed to commercialize stranded gas fields with as little as 0.1 trillion cubic feet (2.8 billion cubic meters) of reserves.

For more information about the seminar or to register online, visit www.zeusintel.com/NAGTL2012.

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