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China’s largest coal-based ethanol project put into trial operation

China’s largest coal-based ethanol project with an annual output of 500,000 tonnes was put into trial operation in Yulin City in northwestern Shaanxi Province on Thursday.

The project uses coal as raw material to produce ethanol and other chemical products, and it can convert 1.5 million tonnes of coal annually. Experts said three tonnes of grain can produce one tonne of ethanol, saving 1.5 million tonnes of bio-ethanol raw grain every year when in full service.

“Compared with the traditional method of producing ethanol with grain fermentation, the project firstly saves food for us and solves the problem of food security, and it is also of important and strategic significance for the high-quality utilization of coal in the future,” said Li Xianfeng, deputy director of the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Ethanol, also known as industrial alcohol, is a widely used chemical raw material that can produce more than 300 kinds of related products.

The Yulin project produces ethanol through carbonylation of dimethyl ether, an internationally leading technology with independent intellectual property rights in China.

In addition to the four methods of using coal to produce olefin, oil, natural gas and ethylene glycol, the new environment-friendly technology will boost the high-end, diversified and low carbonization development of China’s coal chemical industry.

“Through the extension of the industrial category, the added value of the industry has increased by over three times. And over 1,000 jobs will be available by the time the facilities are put into operation,” said Li Junlin, deputy general manager of Shaanxi Yanchang Petroleum Yulin Coal and Chemical Company.
Source: CGTN

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