Direct conversion of methane to other valuable products such as ethylene, methanol, benzene, carbon, hydrogen, and syngas has been widely investigated. Such conversion requires high temperatures because of the strong C-H bond in CH4, and such high-temperature reactions present various problems: sequential reaction to decrease the selectivity to target products, need for multiple heat exchangers to use or recover high-temperature waste heat, materials that are stable at high temperatures, etc. To solve these problems, several trials have been undertaken to lower reaction temperatures using plasma, Non-Faradaic Electrochemical Modification of Catalytic Activity (NEMCA), and electric fields. This review describes recent trends in methane conversion, and describes our methods to lower the reaction temperature.
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