2021-057 – New Perovskite Material for Methane to Ethylene Conversion

Methane, the simplest hydrocarbon, is produced in excess of 500 million tons every year from a spectrum of gas sources. Highly flammable, methane gas is a key component of both natural gas and shale gas. Due to the complex conversion of methane into transportable fuels, the gas has primarily been used as a traditional source of energy. Although the oxidative and non-oxidative coupling of methane (OCM and NOCM) have been actively researched to produce ethylene and higher olefins, catalysts with commercially viable conversion rates have not yet been developed. As an alternative, electrochemical OCM (EC-OCM) can regulate the oxide ion flux to reduce the over-oxidation of methane and activate methane – increasing its potential as an ideal methane conversion process. In addition, Iron (Fe) based catalysts have been shown to activate methane in both OCM and NOCM, but they suffer from coking-related durability challenges. Hence, there is a need for a novel material that facilitates the activation of methane with commercial viability, by overcoming the above complexity and durability limitations.

Technology Description:
Researchers at the University of New Mexico have developed a new type of perovskites, offering ideal characteristics for methane conversion via both oxidative coupling (OCM) and electrochemical oxidative coupling (EC-OCM). Mixed ionic electronic conductivity has been achieved in the novel perovskites. The physical and chemical properties were evaluated using Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), X-Ray Diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FT-IR) Analysis indicate very good chemical stability under methane conversion conditions. TGA and FT-IR measurements further show a favorable adsorption behavior above 4000C indicating the suitability of the new perovskites for methane conversion applications.




  • Reduced methane conversion complexity
  • Increased iron content resulted in increased ethylene production
  • Utilized as catalysts for EC-OCM
  • Exhibit ideal physical and chemical properties under methane conversion conditions

Potential Applications:

  • Methane Conversion
  • Ethylene Production
  • Electrochemical Oxidative Coupling (EC-OCM) Catalysts

Contact Information:

Name: Andrew Roerick

Email: aroerick@innovations.unm.edu

Phone: 505-277-0608