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September 04, 2012

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According to “BP Statistical Review of World Energy June 2012” U.S currently is the world's largest gas natural producer and also can have enough of this gas for the next 100 years. The main component of natural gas is methane, which has the advantage of being cheaper than gasoline and other also emits less carbon dioxide when it’s burned. But methane is considered as “a powerful greenhouse gas and is about 21 times more powerful at warming the atmosphere than carbon dioxide (CO2)”, EPA said.
I agree with Dr. Chianelli these facts mean opportunities to the catalytic materials community to develop new catalysts for burning this fuel because catalysts that are currently available for this purpose, are not capable of completely burning methane
leaving unburned methane escapes into the atmosphere and contribute to climate change. “Now, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania, along with collaborators from Italy and Spain, have created a material that catalyzes the burning of methane 30 times better than do currently available catalysts”. These new catalysts materials rely on cerium oxide (CeO2) and Palladium (Pd). They first built the palladium particles -- just 1.8 nanometers in diameter -- and then surrounded them with a protective porous shell made of cerium oxide, creating a collection of spherical structures with metallic cores.”

1. BP Statistical Review of World Energy June 2012
2. University of Pennsylvania (2012, August 9). Cheaper and cleaner catalyst for burning methane. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 25, 2012, from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120809141619.htm
3. U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). June 2010

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