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Activation of methane in microwave plasmas at high pressure

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Methane is converted to C2 products in a microwave plasma under pressure up to 400 torr at maximum plasma power of 100 W. Steam is introduced with methane into the plasma zone in order to suppress coke formation. Major products are C2 hydrocarbons. Small amounts of benzene are also formed. Very small amounts of some unusual highly unsaturated hydrocarbons are also formed. Oxygenated products are CO and CO2. The conversion and yields are related to experimental variables by an empirical second order linear model. The conversion of methane ranges from 10 to 60%. The yield of C2 products ranges from 5 to 68%. The major C2 product is acetylene.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Chemistry, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA; 2: Department of Chemistry, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA; Institute of Materials Science, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA; Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, USA; 3: Texaco Research Center, Texaco, Inc., PO Box 509, Beacon, NY 12508, USA; 4: Texaco Ltd., Information and Technology, 1 Westferry Circus, Canary Wharf, London, E14 4HA, UK


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