The half-century-old Standard Oil technology disclosed herein is directed toward the complete conversion of the Carbon contained in low grade Coal into both liquid "motor fuels", and, either by-product substitute natural gas, "fuel gas", or, additional liquid hydrocarbon synthesis gas.
 
In it's Disclosure, this official United States Government publication confirms, and further validates, at least two technical concepts we have lately, from other sources, been documenting:
 
Coal, perhaps especially low grade Coal, can be made to emit volatile gasses, as are suitable for catalytic condensation into liquid hydrocarbons, via long-known "coking" processes, herein, and as elsewhere, referred to as "carbonization" and/or "distillation".
 
Moreover, plain, hot Carbon, simple "Coke", such as the residue left by the "distillation" of Coal, can be reacted with Steam to generate even more of those volatile gasses, also compositionally well-suited for such catalytic condensation into liquid hydrocarbons.
 
Further discussion follows excerpts from: 
 
"United States Patent 2,676,908 - Carbonization of Lignite to Produce Motor Fuels
 
Date: April, 1954
 
Inventor: Henry Noel, NJ
 
Assignee: Standard Oil Development Company, DE
 
Abstract: The present invention relates to an improved process for the efficient utilization of low grade carbonaceous solid material ... and ... to a process for converting such materials into more valuable products, including motor fuels ... .
 
(It) has been found that the production of undesirable phenolic distillation products may be to a large degree minimized and the yield of oil substantially increased by applying the so called "methylation" technique to lignite distillation ... (and) ... valuable high octane gasoline blending material is thus obtained.
 
It is the main object of the present invention to provide a means whereby low grade carbonaceous solids may be carbonized on a commercial scale to furnish high yields of aromatic material(s) ... (which are) suitable as high anti-knock blending agents for motor fuels.
 
A still further object of the invention is to utilize semi-coke from the process to prepare high Btu fuel gas and/or hydrocarbon synthesis gas.
 
Claims: An improved process for producing valuable motor fuels from low grade carbonaceous solids (wherein) after removing (and recovering for use) volatile products (the) coky residue (is passed) into a gasification zone where it is (reacted) with steam to form a gas rich in H2 and CO ... ."
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This is, in essence, a low temperature carbonization technique, such as earlier developed, as we previously documented for the West Virginia Coal Association, by US Bureau of Mines scientist Lewis Karrick, i.e., the "Karrick Process", also known as "Low Temperature Carbonization", or, more simply, "LTC".
 
It is similar as well to the "COED" Coal conversion process once operated at a New Jersey pilot plant, for the US Government, by the FMC Corporation, with the unfortunate participation of Atlantic Richfield (ARCO). 
 
Reports of all of that are available in the WV Coal Association's R&D Blog archives.
 
Also available are reports of technologies, similar to that disclosed in this United States Patent, wherein the still-carbonaceous residues of LTC were further processed to yield even more hydrocarbon values.
 
In one case, we remind you, such residues, from the New Jersey COED process, were sent to Spain, where they were further processed into hydrocarbons through a direct liquefaction utilizing the Coal oil, naphthalene, after it, itself, had been hydrogenated to form the Coal liquefaction solvent known, among the cognoscenti, as "tetralin"; which is, again as we've reported, the solvent specified by West Virginia University, in their "West Virginia Process" for the direct liquefaction of Coal.  
 
In the instance of the Standard Oil technology disclosed herein, however, those still-carbonaceous residues from the initial "distillation", or low-temperature carbonization, of Coal, which yields hydrocarbons suitable for condensation into: "valuable products, including motor fuels ... (and) ... valuable high octane gasoline blending material"; are, in a way similar to others we've reported concerning the reactions of Steam with hot Coal; gasified with Steam to generate even more hydrogenated synthesis gas, a product that is "rich in H2 and CO", as in the excerpts above, which can then be catalytically condensed via, as an example, the Fischer-Tropsch technology into even more liquid hydrocarbons.
 
We submit, as we have previously with regards to similar technologies we've documented that were directed to the conversion of lignite into more versatile liquid and gaseous fuels, that some older accumulations of Coal mine wastes, which often contain refuse from mined, but discarded, high-ash "rider" coal seams, could potentially be reclaimed and processed via "lignite" conversion processes like Standard Oil's.
 
And, we see no reason why this technology should be confined to the conversion of lignite.
 
High-grade West Virginia bituminous Coal might not yield as much volatile material, proportionally, with the initial distillation.
 
But, the purified Coke that resulted would almost certainly be ideally suited for the subsequent gasification with Steam, and resultant conversion of such Coke residue into, as above, in our excerpts from the Disclosure, a: "fuel gas and/or hydrocarbon synthesis gas ... rich in H2 and CO".

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