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California Methanol Assessment; Volume II, Technical Report

O'Toole, R. and Dutzi, E. and Gershman, R. and Heft, R. and Kalema, W. and Maynard, D. (1983) California Methanol Assessment; Volume II, Technical Report. National Aeronautics and Space Administration , Pasadena, CA. (Unpublished)

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A joint effort by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the California Institute of Technology Division of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering has brought together sponsors from both the public and private sectors for an analysis of the prospects for methanol use as a fuel in California, primarily for the transportation and stationary application sectors. Increasing optimism in 1982 for a slower rise in oil prices and a more realistic understanding of the costs of methanol production have had a negative effect on methanol viability in the near term (before the year 2000). Methanol was determined to have some promise in the transportation sector, but is not forecasted for large-scale use until beyond the year 2000. Similarly, while alternative use of methanol can have a positive effect on air quality (reducing NOx, SOx, and other emissions), a best case estimate is for less than 4% reduction in peak ozone by 2000 at realistic neat methanol vehicle adoption rates. Methanol is not likely to be a viable fuel in the stationary application sector because it cannot compete economically with conventional fuels except in very limited cases. On the production end, it was determined that methanol produced from natural gas will continue to dominate supply options through the year 2000, and the present and planned industry capacity is somewhat in excess of all projected needs. Nonsubsidized coal-based methanol cannot compete with conventional feedstocks using current technology, but coal-based methanol has promise in the long term (after the year 2000), providing that industry is willing to take the technical and market risks and that government agencies will help facilitate the environment for methanol. Given that the prospects for viable major markets (stationary applications and neat fuel in passenger cars) are unlikely in the 1980s and early 1990s, the next steps for methanol are in further experimentation and research of production and utilization technologies, expanded use as an octane enhancer, and selected fleet implementation. In the view of the study, it is not advantageous at this time to establish policies within California that attempt to expand methanol use rapidly as a neat fuel for passenger cars or to induce electric utility use of methanol on a widespread basis.

Item Type:Report or Paper (Technical Report)
Additional Information:Prepared for Electric Power Research Institute Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission, State of California through agreements with National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and Atlantic Richfield Company, Chevron USA, Inc., Conoco Coal Development Company, E.I. du Pont de Nemours Co., Inc., Exxon Research & Engineering Co., Ford Motor Company, General Motors Corporation, Litton Energy Systems, Pacific Gas & Electric COmpany, Phillips Petroleum Company, Solar Energy Research Institute, U.S. Department of Energy, Southern California Edison Company, Sun Company, Texaco, Inc., United States Synthetic Fuels Corporation, through grants to and agreements with California Institute of Technology. Prepared by Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Division of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California. Prepared by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology with the assistance and sponsorship of a multi-institutional assessment team partly through an agreement with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and partly through the California Institute of Technology. Neither the various sponsors, the United States Government nor any agency thereof, or the Jet Propulsion Laboratory~ California Institute of Technology, or any of their employees, makes any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness or omissions, or usefulness of any information~ apparatus, product, or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights. Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the various sponsors or the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology. The views and opinions of authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of all the sponsors or participants involved in this effort. (NASA Tasks RE-152, Amendment 297, CEC 500-82-024; RE-152, Amendment 326, EPRI TPS8l-795; and Caltech Work Order 91909). The original concept for the California Methanol Assessment was developed by Professor William H. Corcoran of Caltech and James Kelley of JPL. They established a relationship among public and private organizations with diverse interests in methanol, thereby enabling the initiation of the California Methanol Assessment. Professor Corcoran was the Principal Investigator for the Assessment until his unexpected death in August 1982. Caltech Professor George Gavalas assumed the role of Principal Investigator and Caltech/JPL Assessment Coordinator. Professor Harry Gray, Chairman of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Caltech, provided information and support to Professor Gavalas and the Caltech Assessment Team participants. A key element of the California Methanol Assessment was the interaction between the Assessment Team and representatives of public and private organizations with diverse methanol interests. The following organizations and individuals comprised the Technical Advisory Group, providing information, advice, and criticism to the Caltech/JPL Assessment Team participants. Atlantic Richfield Company: Thomas J. Clough, John Siemssen; California State Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission: Charles Y. Mizutani, Wendy Reid, David Maul, Ken D. Smith; Chevron USA, Inc.: John Leutwyler, Will Danker; Conoco Coal Development Company: Robert G. Jackson, Carla Stone; E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company, Inc.: John Hannon, Don Moore; Electric Power Research Institute: Seymour Alpert, H. H. Gilman; Exxon Research and Engineering Company: Kariston Moritz, Leonard Bernstein, Terry Kett, Hugh Shannon; Ford Motor Company: Roberta Nichols; General Motors Corporation: Joe Colucci; Litton Energy Systems: Al Baxley; Pacific Gas and Electric Company: David Hovarongkura; Jim Kimball; Phillips Petroleum Company: Donn B. Wimmer; Solar Energy Research Institute: Joe Finegold; Southern California Edision Company: Charles McCarthy, George Clark; Sun Company: Walt Douthit, Dave Barmby; Texaco, Inc.: Carl Cottle, Fred Wilson, Kathy George; United States Synthetic Fuels Corp.: Larry Ruff, Jim Harlan. The California Methanol Assessment was led by Richard P. O'Toole of JPL. The principal JPL authors of the Assessment and the sections of the Technical Report they were responsible for are: Elisabeth Dutzi: Chapters 3 and 10; Robert Gershman: Chapters 2 and 9; Ronald Heft: Chapters 7 and 8; David Maynard: Chapter 5; Richard O'Toole: Chapter 4 and Summary Report; William Kalema, Caltech: Chapter 6. Supporting JPL Team members included: Cindy Carlson; Karl Eckman; Joe Ferrall; Jack Harris; Frank Hoehn; Sue Jones; John McCarthy; Lowell Orren; Gerald Voecks; Eugene Warren; Michael Ziman. Also, Dr. Donald Rapp of JPL made a significant contribution to the study by synthesizing and incorporating many of the sponsor comments into the Technical Report from the March Technical Advisory Group meeting. In addition, Gregory McRae and Puvin Pichaichanarong of Caltech provided significant assistance in determining the probable air-quality consequences of methanol utilization. Alice Dennison of Caltech coordinated the managerial and financial aspects of this joint JPL/Caltech activity. Pamela Hillman of the Caltech Industrial Associates Office assisted in coordinating the initial Technical Advisory Group meeting. Arlene Calvert of JPL was responsible for word processing and assembling the final report. She was assisted by Fran Mulvehill, and Susan Elrod of JPL who prepared graphical materials for the Technical Advisory Group meetings and the final report. Joyce Whitney served as Project Staff Assistant to J. Kelley of JPL and W. Corcoran of Caltech and coordinated the Technical Advisory Group meetings.
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ID Code:9320
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Deposited On:13 Dec 2007
Last Modified:02 Oct 2019 23:59

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