Ethane

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Ethane molecule

Ethane, chemical formulae C2H6, is a type of hydrocarbon. Ethane is an important building block used to produce Ethene (ethylene).

Production

Ethane can be produced on Mars by the Fischer-Tropsch reaction from CO and hydrogen. CO is produced from atmospheric CO2 and Hydrogen using the reverse water gas shift reaction. Hydrogen can be obtained through electrolysis of water.

Uses

Ethane is used to mainly to produce ethylene. the Fischer-Tropsch reaction creates both ethane and ethylene. The Ethane can be reduced to ethylene by steam cracking.

Ethane can be used to produce Acetic acid, the main ingredient (4%) in vinegar besides water. Vinegar's formula is CH3COOH. On Earth, Acetic acid is mostly produced from methanol.

References

Wikipedia article