BC Insight - Nitrogen+Syngas, Sulphur, Fertilizer International
Login
BCInsight Ltd
China Works
Black Prince Road
London, SE1 7SJ
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7793 2567
Fax: +44 (0)20 7793 2577

Publication > Issue > Articles

Iran: ambitious plans

Summary

Iran has ambitious plans to use its considerable natural gas reserves to become a major regional producer and supplier of syngas-based chemicals. But as always, political considerations loom large.

Abstract

Iran has been on something of a rollercoaster ride for the past two and a half decades, beginning in 1979 when the monarchy was overthrown and a unique Islamic republic was declared, in which religious clerics – headed by Ayatollah Khomeini – wielded ultimate political control. There followed an unstable and bloody period, including an eight-year war with Iraq, in which the country’s oil wealth plummeted from its previous high levels.

Add to basket


This time it's personal

Summary

Although methanol is no longer currently in vogue as a fuel for vehicle applications, it has become the preferred fuel for the next generation of personal electronic devices, for both military and civilian users. Meanwhile hydrogen continues to be favoured for vehicle applications, in spite of the difficulties surrounding it, and natural gas for larger-scale installations.

Abstract

It is sometimes rather unkindly said that “fuel cells are the energy source of the future, and they always will be”. Since our last update there have been significant developments, but also major disappointments. For example, predictions made just a few years ago of methanol as a vehicle fuel in fuel cells by the end of this decade are now starting to look hopelessly out of date. Hydrogen has become the preferred fuel for vehicle applications, because of the technology difficulties that have been encountered in implementing vehicle fuel cells, and the engineering constraints in terms of weight, size etc. On the other hand, in areas such as portable electronics and stationary power plants, fuel cells seem to have taken off.

Add to basket


Nitrogen 2006 conference report

Summary

The Nitrogen 2006 International Conference and Exhibition, organised by British Sulphur Publishing, was held at the InterContinental Hotel, Vienna, from March 12th–15th.

Abstract

The continuing run of high product prices helped to keep the mood upbeat as over 300 delegates from the nitrogen and related industries met in a slightly wintry Vienna earlier this year – a new record for the conference.

Nevertheless, as last year, the prospect of future industry overcapacity continued to loom large in delegates’ thinking. Conference director and Nitrogen + Syngas publisher John French, introducing the conference, commented that since last year’s conference in Romania, events had conspired to make all of our lives interesting – sometimes a little too interesting, as high gas prices led to knock-on effects in downstream ammonia and nitrogen capacity, with closures in the UK and US, and many other plants in central and eastern Europe threatened. However, he added, product prices remained high, new capacity announcements are continuing, and while some companies have experienced difficult fourth quarters, others such as Sabic and Agrium have posted record results. There was, he said, clearly plenty of scope out there for making money, and he hoped that over the next few days the delegates would discover the information or make the contacts that enabled them to continue to do so.

Add to basket


Keeping up with the future?

Summary

Hydrogen demand is rising steeply just to meet the challenges of today's world fuel supply. But if the "Hydrogen Economy" is to become a reality, some tough problems need to be addressed.

Abstract

The prospect of a totally clean, non-toxic, feather-weight fuel that produces only water when it burns is a tantalising one indeed. The only such fuel is elemental hydrogen. Unfortunately, it does not exist as such in the terrestrial environment and can only be generated by processing appropriate materials containing it in chemically-combined form. To wrest it from its chemically-combined forms needs much energy, some of which may be the intrinsic chemical energy of the hydrogen source itself but the balance of which must be from an external source. And according to the laws of thermodynamics, the amount of energy that can be obtained from it will always fall short of the energy that must be expended in producing it. In short, hydrogen can only ever be a secondary energy source – an energy carrier – not a primary energy source.

Add to basket