PEP Review 80-1-3
Ethylene by Methanol Homologation
Published: March 1981
The reaction of methanol with H2-CO synthesis gas to produce ethanol is called "homologation." The design and economics of the reaction have been studied, for the very large scale conversion of coal-derived methanol and synthesis gas to ethanol, which is in turn catalytically dehydrated to 1 billion lb/yr of ethylene.
The homologation route does not appear attractive relative to either of these other processes.