U.S. researchers have created a more cost-effective, clean and efficient way to convert natural gas into fuel and chemicals currently produced by oil products, according to a report in the journal Science. "This would lead to a paradigm change in the petrochemical industry, increase energy security and facilitate sustainability, as natural gas is cleaner than petroleum or coal," said study leader Roy Periana of the Scripps Energy and Materials Center at Florida's Scripps Research Institute. Periana said the process is not ready for commercialization, but could be ready for a pilot plant within four years.

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