The net-zero carbon emission scenario of stopping hydrocarbon use as fuel is unlikely to end the extraction of fossil hydrocarbons. Remaining will be a sizable need for hydrocarbons as feedstocks for commodity chemicals destined for transformation into polymers, manufacturing-relevant intermediates, and value-added chemicals. Historically, the primary feedstock source has been oil. Over the past dozen years, however, fracking-based extraction of shale-trapped natural gas from known enormous reserves, in North America, has resulted in feedstock sourcing instead from wet shale gas. This shift has transformed the catalytic chemistry of commodity chemical manufacturing. In this review, following a brief discussion of the merits and limitations of crystallographically well-defined metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) as model catalysts and catalyst-supports, we examined their applications for understanding and potentially enabling carbon-economical, catalytic transformation of C1, C2, C3, and C4 components of natural gas to desirable commodity chemicals, intermediates, or model compounds.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Chemistry
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Nuclear Energy and Engineering