Research Topic

Novel Chemical Catalytic and Photocatalytic Processes for the Direct Conversion of Methane and CO2 to Products

About this Research Topic

In 20 years from now, we are expected to reach the Natural Gas Golden Age, when methane will play a leading role as a primary industrial feedstock. Currently, however, the industrial use of methane, the major component in natural gas, is still limited to the production of hydrogen and syngas. Associated with the increasing use of natural gas as industrial feedstock, an increase in the CO2 footprint in the chemical industry, is also expected, since CO2 is not only present in natural gas, but also a typical byproduct in the oxidative conversion of methane. CO2 is a greenhouse gas and for a more sustainable chemical industry, its use needs to be better addressed.

Methane is mainly converted by the reforming reaction, aiming at the production of hydrogen or syngas (e.g. for methanol synthesis). A major challenge is developing efficient chemical processes for the direct conversion of methane to drop-in chemicals, such as methanol, higher alkanes, or olefins. Another major challenge is improving the efficiency of methane reforming processes, leading to a sustainable production of hydrogen.

Profitable use of CO2, which is the major byproduct in methane conversion, would lead to an overall reduction in the process cost and contribute to the reduction of emissions of greenhouse gases. Due to the high O/C ratio, CO2 can lead to functionalized molecules. Nevertheless, these processes still need further development to become cost-effective.

Hence, for a more efficient conversion of both methane and CO2 into chemicals (chemical intermediates, precursors for polymers, polymers, and fuels), new catalytic and photocatalytic systems must be developed. The Webconference “Novel Chemical Catalytic and Photocatalytic Processes for the Direct Conversion of Methane and CO2 to Products” will be hosted online from October 21st to 23rd 2020 and this Research Topic aims to serve towards the continuation of the scientific discussion.

We welcome Original Research, Review, Mini Review and Perspective articles on themes including, but not limited to:

• Development of novel methodologies for the sustainable conversion of methane and CO2 to drop-in chemicals
• Development of novel catalysts and photocatalysts (such as catalyst modification, design of new catalysts, and synthesis methodologies).
• Understanding of the surface chemistry and the correlation between structure and catalytic activity.
• Optimization of reaction conditions leading to sustainable production
• Reactor design
• Application of multi-step technologies
• Computational studies


Keywords: heterogeneous catalyst, photocatalysis, CO2, methane, natural gas


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

In 20 years from now, we are expected to reach the Natural Gas Golden Age, when methane will play a leading role as a primary industrial feedstock. Currently, however, the industrial use of methane, the major component in natural gas, is still limited to the production of hydrogen and syngas. Associated with the increasing use of natural gas as industrial feedstock, an increase in the CO2 footprint in the chemical industry, is also expected, since CO2 is not only present in natural gas, but also a typical byproduct in the oxidative conversion of methane. CO2 is a greenhouse gas and for a more sustainable chemical industry, its use needs to be better addressed.

Methane is mainly converted by the reforming reaction, aiming at the production of hydrogen or syngas (e.g. for methanol synthesis). A major challenge is developing efficient chemical processes for the direct conversion of methane to drop-in chemicals, such as methanol, higher alkanes, or olefins. Another major challenge is improving the efficiency of methane reforming processes, leading to a sustainable production of hydrogen.

Profitable use of CO2, which is the major byproduct in methane conversion, would lead to an overall reduction in the process cost and contribute to the reduction of emissions of greenhouse gases. Due to the high O/C ratio, CO2 can lead to functionalized molecules. Nevertheless, these processes still need further development to become cost-effective.

Hence, for a more efficient conversion of both methane and CO2 into chemicals (chemical intermediates, precursors for polymers, polymers, and fuels), new catalytic and photocatalytic systems must be developed. The Webconference “Novel Chemical Catalytic and Photocatalytic Processes for the Direct Conversion of Methane and CO2 to Products” will be hosted online from October 21st to 23rd 2020 and this Research Topic aims to serve towards the continuation of the scientific discussion.

We welcome Original Research, Review, Mini Review and Perspective articles on themes including, but not limited to:

• Development of novel methodologies for the sustainable conversion of methane and CO2 to drop-in chemicals
• Development of novel catalysts and photocatalysts (such as catalyst modification, design of new catalysts, and synthesis methodologies).
• Understanding of the surface chemistry and the correlation between structure and catalytic activity.
• Optimization of reaction conditions leading to sustainable production
• Reactor design
• Application of multi-step technologies
• Computational studies


Keywords: heterogeneous catalyst, photocatalysis, CO2, methane, natural gas


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

21 December 2020 Abstract
26 April 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

21 December 2020 Abstract
26 April 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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