The Global Methane Pledge declared at the 2021 United Nations climate
change conference (COP26) marked the world’s commitment to eradicate
methane emissions. Most of these emissions are generated by the oil-gas
industry, waste landfills, and agriculture sectors, and are lean in
composition. This work explores the use of an intensified reactor that
implements the chemical looping principle to handle lean methane
emissions. A model-based framework is used to showcase the baseline
performance of the proposed reactor in converting methane emissions
using nickel-based oxygen carriers. Then, sensitivity analysis of the
reactor performance with respect to operating conditions is performed.
The reactor is subsequently optimized to minimize the methane emitted,
using a dynamic program with safety and operability constraints for the
alternating redox process. With the optimal cycle strategy, we
demonstrate that near-complete methane conversion can be achieved by the
reactor without external heating.