Innovative and Strategic Transformation of Alkane Resources

CISTAR’s vision is to create a transformative engineered system to convert light hydrocarbons from shale resources to chemicals and transportation fuels in smaller, modular, local, and highly networked processing plants. The last 10 years have witnessed an unprecedented revolution in the domestic supply of shale hydrocarbon reserves with the potential to lower the cost of our nation’s electricity, power, chemicals, and fuels for the next 100 years. If new technologies can be developed, energy experts project the U.S. will transition from a net importer to net exporter of energy resources by 2030. In addition, substitution of natural gas for coal for electrical power generation has, and will continue, to be a major contributor to the reduction in U.S. greenhouse gas until economic, renewable energy future can be developed. CISTAR researchers and educators will help accelerate the transition by:

  • producing new, broadly disseminated and impactful science for energy and fuels technology from shale gas hydrocarbons;
  • generating intellectual property to support commercialization of new technologies;
  • demonstrating a combined experimental-computational approach to materials discovery that can be applied beyond hydrocarbon research;
  • providing leading-edge analysis of important environmental issues associated with shale gas upgrading;
  • developing a diversified, well-trained workforce of innovative students with technical and professional skills; and
  • informing the public about safe and environmentally responsible ways to use U.S. hydrocarbon resources.

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