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Beyond Oil and Gas
The Methanol Economy
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George A. Olah obtained his doctorate at the Technical University of Budapest in 1949 and is now Donald P. and Katherine B. Loker Distinguished Professor of Organic Chemistry and Director of the Loker Hydrocarbon Institute at the University of Southern California, USA. He has received numerous awards and recognitions worldwide, including memberships in various academies of science and 12 honorary degrees. He has some 1,400 scientific papers, 20 books and more than 140 patents to his name. Professor Olah's research spans a wide range of synthetic and mechanistic organic chemistry. But most notably, his work on the chemistry of carbocations earned him the 1994 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Alain Goeppert is a research associate in the groups of Profs. George A. Olah and G. K. Surya Prakash at the Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute at the University of Southern California, USA, since 2002. After obtaining his diploma in chemistry from the University Robert Schuman in Strasbourg, France, he received his engineering degree from the Fachhochschule Aalen, Germany. He then returned to Strasbourg to obtain his PhD in 2002 under the direction of Prof. Jean Sommer at the Universite Louis Pasteur. Dr. Goeppert's current research is focused on the transformation of methane and CO2 into more valuable products and CO2 capture technologies. G. K. Surya Prakash is currently a Professor and Olah Nobel Laureate Chair in Hydrocarbon Chemistry and Scientific Co-Director at the Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute at University of Southern California, USA. After gaining his bachelor and master degrees from India, he obtained his PhD from the University of Southern California under the direction of Prof. Olah in 1978. Professor Prakash has close to 600 scientific papers, 9 books and 25 patents to his name, and has received many accolades, including two American Chemical Society National Awards. His primary research interests are in superacid, hydrocarbon, synthetic organic & organofluorine chemistry, energy and catalysis areas.
Preface Acronyms and Initialisms Units and their Abbreviations 1. Introduction 2. History of Coal in the Industrial Revolution and Beyond 3. History of Petroleum Oil and Natural Gas 4. Fossil Fuel Resources and Their Use 5. Diminishing Oil and Natural Gas Reserves 6. The Continuing Need for Carbon Fuels, Hydrocarbons and their Products 7. Fossil Fuels and Climate Change 8. Renewable Energy Sources and Atomic Energy 9. The Hydrogen Economy and its Limitations 10. The "Methanol Economy": General Aspects 11. Methanol and Dimethyl Ether as Fuels and Energy Carriers 12. Production of Methanol: From Fossil Fuels to Bio-Sources 13. Chemical Carbon Dioxide Recycling through Methanol: Closing the Loop 14. Methanol-Based Chemicals, Synthetic Hydrocarbons and Materials 15. Future Outlook References Index