making methanol

hi im looking to make some methanol i have heard you cna do this by mixing cabon monoxide and hydrogen but i have no idea how anyone got any ideas for making these and therefore being able to make methanol or other ways of making methanol cheers josh

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muhlezi3 years ago

Hi. This is very interesting topic.

aabraham66 years ago
can anyone tell me hw to really make it...i'm in need of it but it is nt available to buy around her...whatever ,,,even it is available ..i would like to make it....pls anyone TELL ME HOW TO MAKE METHANOL!!!
Qcks aabraham66 years ago
Get a steel barrel.
Fill it with wood.
Add a single copper pipe to vent the otherwise sealed chamber.
For the best yield, cool the copper pipe.
Heat the barrel up.
Like alot.
heating the barrel over a white hot fire for an hour or so is typically sufficient.

after the stil stops producing methanol, remove it from the heat and let it cool.
Once cold, you can open the barrel.
You'll have charcoal left as a by product.

If you want to use the charcoal it's self, it's a little bit more difficult, but can be done.
by adding small amounts of copper, zinc oxide and aluminium oxide, syngas, aka, hydrogen + carbon monoxide which is mostly produced when wood is pyrolized, will turn back into methanol. generally wood or anything really, directly turns into that and methanol equally apparently. by pressurizing the reaction around copper catalyst, often brass or copper tubing will be enough, the syngas will turn into methanol which overall increases the potential methanol production from somewhere like 30% to 70%.

Ah... I didn't notice this addendum when you made it a year ago....
I wasn't trying to be exhaustive when I made this reply, but you are correct, catalysts do improve yield. Still, the biggest issue when doing pyrolysis isn't catalysts, it's limiting reactants, and in this case, both hydrogen and oxygen are limited (hydrogen tends to be a bit more limited). Simply chewing or shredding your carbon source helps.

Zinc Oxide and Aluminum oxide both can donate oxygen to the reaction, though aluminum only does so temporarily. Aluminum oxide in the form of Zeolite tends to be the superior catalyst though because the 3d structure has a large surface area that tends to carry lots of air with it (and thus oxygen).

Zeolite plugs just prior to the copper condenser helps increase yield allot.

Relying on the catalytic properties of the brass/copper tubing as a catalyst site has mixed results. It's debated as to why exactly, but i think it's because it's only indirectly active I believe that the actual catalytic agent is Sulfur, which reacts with escaping hydrogen to form hydrogen disulfide, which then reacts with copper/brass tubing, allowing the carbon monoxide to form methanol. Different types of plants have varying sulfur content (high protein plants have more sulfur), and thus better reactions to purely copper/brass catalysts.

Ideally, once you stopped getting methanol out, you'd have a way to inject small amounts of steam into the lower portion of the crucible. The carbon would react with the water and you could drive the reaction to completion, or close to it. You'd have to watch the temperature though. This would cause it to dip during injection unless the steam was pressurized.

mdouglas123 years ago

Electrolysis would be the easiest way to produce hydrogen. A little water; some tubing and a couple balloons. Oh, and an extension cord with a cathode and anode. One side produces Oxygen, the other produces Hydrogen. The balloons will tell you which is which. The one that inflates the fastest is the Hydrogen. Best to do this in a VERY well ventilated area. Hydrogen gas is explosive, especially in an oxygen rich environment.

craftyv4 years ago
Just to let you know that 3 men in Queensland, this week, have been hospitalised with poisoning and possible brain damage from drinking methanol.
craftyv craftyv4 years ago
DANGER: Update. Three men died this week of home made Grappa using methanol. Don't do it, please.
blkhawk craftyv4 years ago
At least in US it is legal to produce alcohol for fuel. It is not advisable to drink any denatured alcohol like methanol. There is a good book in the subject of producing alcohol: The Secrets of Building an Alcohol Producing Still by Vincent R. Gingery.
There are two extremely common forms of unconsumable alcohols, which can often be purchased in supermarkets everywhere ranging from USA, AUstralia, Europe and asia.

Denatured alcohol is ethanol contaminated with methanol , 95% eth - 5% meth
Its ethanol sold in an unconsumable form for use as fuel, without being elligible for liquor taxation.

Methylated spirits is the complete opposit, 90-95% methanol - 5-10% ethanol. Its essentially methanol, but has ethanol included to make it more volatile as a fuel, as well as also making the flame actually visible without the need for expensive non toxic alcohol like colourants.
Anything called wood alcohol, wood spirits, or wood anything, is always almost entirely methanol.

To produce methanol from carbon monoxide (or dioxide) and hydrogen, you force the gasses into a pressurized container containing copper, zinc oxide, aluminium oxide or all the above, heating the container to at around 250-300 celcius. the gas i think must be at 5–10 MPa. nearly all gas will be converted into methanol so long as slightly more than enough hydrogen is used, methanol will exit as gas which must be distilled (passed through a cold copper tube), to become liquid. this method incidentally produces 99% pure methanol.
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