Methanol’s use in transportation fuels is growing. Methanol is a versatile, affordable alternative transportation fuel due to its efficient combustion, ease of distribution and wide availability around the globe. Methanol is used in gasoline blends around the world at low (3-5%), mid (15-30%) and high (50-100%) volume percentages, and as a diesel substitute for use in heavy-duty vehicles (HDVs).
China is leading the way with its promotion of M100 (100% methanol) fuel and methanol-derived fuels such as A20, a 15% methanol-5% bioethanol blend, are being trialed in Italy.
Methanol Fuel in China Report
The Methanol Fuel in China report was the outcome of a collaborative effort between MI, Methanex, and China Association of Alcohol and Ether Fuels and Automobiles (CAAEFA) to shed light on the intricacies of the methanol fuel market in China which has to date remained largely opaque to observers. The report’s authors gathered data through a survey of more than four hundred Chinese companies that were either manufacturers or users of methanol applications in China. The sampling pool for the survey was representative of the whole supply chain from production to consumption of methanol, to include the technologies that enabled its consumption as a fuel. This allowed the authors to get a holistic insight into the entire value chain of different methanol applications. In 2019, total consumption of methanol fuel in China reached nearly 6 million metric tons (2 billion gallons or 7.5 billion liters) accounting for 7% of total methanol consumption in China, the world’s largest methanol market.
Methanol Institute Releases Two New Reports On Methanol Fuel
The Methanol Institute (MI) released two reports on the use of methanol as a safe, efficient and clean alternative fuel for cars, trucks and buses.
SGS Inspire has prepared a report for the Methanol Institute titled “Methanol: Properties and Uses,” providing an explanation of the main physical and chemical properties of methanol, as well as how these properties affect the different types of existing internal combustion engines in the market.
The report provides a summary of an analysis of physical properties of 19 samples of gasoline and methanol, as well as co-solvents ethanol, methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) and tertbutyl alcohol (TBA) in different blending ratios. In total, 203 properties were analyzed in the laboratory, for a total of nearly 4,000 tests. The report validates the technical feasibility of methanol fuels and includes a review of the existing literature and scientific evidence on the use of methanol as a fuel.
Future Fuel Strategies has prepared a primer report for the MI titled, “Methanol: A Future-Proof Fuel,” offering a status report and overview of methanol and its current uses in vehicle transportation fuels and its role in future fuels as well. Increasingly, methanol is being used around the world in several innovative applications to meet growing demand for energy, particularly in transport. The primer presents methanol’s fuel quality benefits, addresses concerns about the use of methanol, the history of methanol blending in fuels, and its future potential as a renewable fuel capable of significantly reducing CO2 emissions.