This article briefly reviewed the advances in the process of the direct oxidation of methane to methanol (DMTM) with both heterogeneous and homogeneous oxidation. Attention was paid to the conversion of methane by the heterogeneous oxidation process with various transition metal oxides. The most widely studied catalysts are based on molybdenum and iron. For the homogeneous gas phase oxidation, several process control parameters were discussed. Reactor design has the most crucial role in determining its commercialization. Compared to the above two systems, aqueous homogenous oxidation is an efficient route to get a higher yield of methanol. However, the corrosive medium in this method and its serious environmental pollution hinder its widespread use. The key challenge to the industrial application is to find a green medium and highly efficient catalysts.
- Aqueous catalyzed oxidation
- Direct oxidation
- Gas-phase homogeneous oxidation
- Heterogeneous oxidation