Firm plans methanol-gasoline unit in US using Air Liquide technology

26 February 2014 00:11 Source:ICIS News

(Updates throughout)

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US firm Zeogas plans to build a large methanol-gasoline plant using technology licensed from Air Liquide, the company announced on Tuesday.

A news release from Houston-based Zeogas said that it would build a 5,000-tonne/day methanol plant that would use grade AA methanol as a feedstock to produce 16,500 bbl/day of sulphur-free, ultra-low benzene, regular octane gasoline.

Zeogas has secured MegaMethanol technology from Air Liquide Global E&C Solutions, a subsidiary of Air Liquide, the release said.

While there have been numerous announcements in the past two years of new methanol plants to be built in the US, the Zeogas release did not say where the plant would be located.

In a telephone interview, Zeogas founder and chief executive Timothy Belton said that the plant would be in the US.

"Over the next month or two we will be making several more announcements," Belton said.

The company's website said that Belton has held various management consulting roles in both publicly traded and private equity backed companies.

Belton said that his most recent role was as the restructuring advisor and then chief operating officer of TRC Companies, a NYSE-listed environmental and civil engineering firm with experience in engineering and permitting of hydrocarbon pipelines, power plants and wind farms.

Belton received his undergraduate engineering management degree from the University of Texas and a master's degree in business administration (MBA) from Harvard University.

Zeogas co-founder David Muse spent 32 years with ExxonMobil, where he led commissioning and startup for ExxonMobil Development. He also has experience as the owner's engineer on two other efforts to commercialise ExxonMobil's methanol-to-gasoline technology. 

Muse earned his civil engineering degree from Lamar University and executive management training from both Rice and Oxford universities. 

Another co-founder, Jeri Wechsler, has 30 years of business and legal experience, beginning her career as an oil and gas landman after graduating from Louisiana State University.

By Lane Kelley