Natalia Simitsis Copyright: © Natalia Simitsis


Natalia Simitsis

M. Sc.
Chair of Heterogeneous Catalysis and Technical Chemistry


Building: Sammelbau Chemie

Room: 38B 321

Worringerweg 1

52074 Aachen


Phone: +49 241 80 26180
Fax Fax: +49 241 80 22561


Reaction scheme of the DMM synthesis Copyright: © Natalia Simitsis

Advanced catalyst design for dimethoxymethane synthesis by the gas-phase nonoxidative dehydrogenation of methanol

Dimethoxymethane (DMM) and its longer homologues OMEx (oxymethylene ethers) are promising candidates as synthetic diesel fuels that have the potential to significantly reduce soot and NOx emissions. But, current DMM production relies on an oxidative reaction route with the formation of H2O as a by-product leading to low H2 efficiency. However, with regard to increasing demand for more sustainable energy supply all over the world, establishing more hydrogen efficient processes is indispensable. Hence, recently, our group presented a novel gas-phase DMM synthesis strategy (Scheme 1) via the nonoxidative methanol dehydrogenation with the formation of H2 instead of H2O.

This approach appears to be highly attractive due to the potential realization of a closed H2 circulation between methanol and DMM synthesis, thus improving the overall energy efficiency of the process. But, for the selective DMM synthesis via dehydrogenation of methanol, a suitable bifunctional catalyst with both acidic and dehydrogenation sites is necessary. Therefore, the goal of my research is to design and fully understand such bifunctional catalysts for the selective synthesis of DMM.

Research focus

  • Gas-phase transformations
  • Structure-activity relationships
  • Bifunctional catalysts