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Clean Energy from Dimethyl Ether (DME)


MENLO PARK, CA - November 9, 2009: Dimethyl ether (DME) is a clean energy fuel that can be manufactured from various primary energy resources including coal. DME is a colorless, nontoxic and environmentally benign compound used in industry today as a solvent and a propellant in aerosol products. When DME is combusted, it generates absolutely no sulfur oxides and 90% less nitrogen oxide emissions than today’s fossil fuels. Today, SRI Consulting (SRIC) published its techno-economic report DME from Coal providing detailed analysis of two leading DME from coal technologies and their process economics.

Author and SRIC senior consultant Ron Smith commented, “According to the International Energy Agency, long term global energy demand is expected to increase by 60% between 2002 and 2030. In this report, we have calculated that DME as an energy source is economically viable when the crude oil price is at US$55 a barrel. Clearly DME needs to be part of the future energy supply.”

Conventional DME (methanol dehydration) technology lacks the efficiency for large-scale production. By integrating coal gasification and single step DME technology, large-scale production can be achieved from low cost coal. SRIC‘s DME from Coal report provides process economics for integrated production of DME from coal using indirect process technology developed by Haldor-Topsoe, and a direct process technology developed by JFE Holding. The report shows comparative economic summary results for both technologies which are presented at two different capacity levels, 2500 and 5000 metric tons/day.

The DME from Coal report is essential for technical and business managers involved in planning and understanding the market potential of DME as a fuel for power generation, transportation, and domestic use, as well as for the production of industrial chemicals.

For additional information, contact RJ Chang, SRIC’s PEP Director at +1 650 384 4307, or visit the website at

About SRI Consulting

SRI Consulting (SRIC) is the world’s leading business research service for the global chemical industry. Publishing for almost 60 years, SRI Consulting is the preeminent source for in-depth business and process analysis. This report was developed by the Process Economics Program (PEP) group providing in-depth, independent technical and economic evaluation of both commercial and emerging technologies for the chemical and energy industries. SRI Consulting’s headquarters are located in Menlo Park, California with offices in The Woodlands, Texas; Zürich, Switzerland; Tokyo, Japan; and Beijing, China. SRI Consulting is a division of Access Intelligence, LLC.