Tandem conversion of CO2 to valuable hydrocarbons in highly concentrated potassium iron catalysts

Adrian Ramirez, Samy Ould-Chikh, Lieven Gevers, Abhishek Dutta Chowdhury, Edy Abou-Hamad, Antonio Aguilar, Jean-Louis Hazemann, Nimer Wehbe, Abdullah Al Abdulghani, Sergey Kozlov, Luigi Cavallo, Jorge Gascon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


The alarming atmospheric concentration and continuous emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) require immediate action. As a result of advances in CO2 capture and sequestration technologies (generally involving point sources such as energy generation plants), large amounts of pure CO2 will soon be available. In addition to geological storage and other applications of the captured CO2, the development of technologies able to convert this carbon feedstock into commodity chemicals may pave the way towards a more sustainable economy. Here, we present a novel multifunctional catalyst consisting of Fe2O3 encapsulated in K2CO3 that can transform CO2 into olefins via a tandem mechanism. In contrast to traditional systems in Fischer-Tropsch reactions, we demonstrate that when dealing with CO2 conversion (in contrast to CO), very high K loadings are key to activate CO2 via the well-known ‘potassium carbonate mechanism’. The proposed catalytic process is demonstrated to be as productive as existing commercial processes based on synthesis gas while relying on economically and environmentally advantageous CO2 feedstock.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2879-2886
Number of pages8
Issue number12
StatePublished - May 15 2019

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: Funding for this work was provided by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). This research used resources of the Supercomputing Laboratory at KAUST. The FAME-UHD project is financially supported by the French "Grand Emprunt" EquipEx (EcoX, ANR-10-EQPX-27-01), the CEA-CNRS CRG consortium and the INSU CNRS institute.


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