Steady-state and controlled heating rate methanation of CO2 on Ni/MgO in a bench-scale fixed bed tubular reactor

Georg Baldauf-Sommerbauer, Susanne Lux, Wolfgang Aniser, Brigitte Bitschnau, Ilse Letofsky-Papst, Matthäus Siebenhofer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Chemical hydrogen storage via conversion with carbon dioxide into methane is a promising technology in an energy system that relies on renewable energy resources. Robust heterogeneous catalysts are needed for this reaction to proceed at relevant levels. Ni/MgO is a promising catalyst in terms of activity and stability. Although several microscale catalyst studies exist, there is a lack of knowledge on catalyst performance and reactor control at larger scale for carbon dioxide methanation at ambient pressure and a technically relevant stoichiometric H2:CO2 (4:1) feed. Two catalysts with a loading of 11 and 17 wt.% nickel were prepared by wet impregnation, producing a Ni/MgO solid solution with a cubic lattice. Controlled increase (‘scanning experiment’) of the catalyst temperature to 500 °C for the highly exothermic CO2 methanation was compared to steady-state experiments. Scanning and steady-state experiments yield comparable results in terms of carbon dioxide conversion and methane selectivity, whereas scanning experiments lead to considerable time saving. At a moderate temperature of 325 °C and a feed flow consisting of H2:CO2:N2 = 4:1:5 at a flow rate of 250 cm3 STPmin−1, CO2 conversion and CH4 selectivity near thermodynamic equilibrium are achievable. The long-term stability of Ni/MgO (17 wt.% Ni) at 330 °C was proven during reactor operation for several days.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of CO2 Utilization
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis

Fields of Expertise

  • Mobility & Production

Treatment code (Nähere Zuordnung)

  • Basic - Fundamental (Grundlagenforschung)
  • Experimental


  • NAWI Graz

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