United States Patent: 4954246

As now accessible via: Pittsburgh USBM Liquefies Coal with Ultrasound | Research & Development; wherein is detailed the seemingly unlikely: "United States Patent 3,577,337 - Solvent Extraction of Coal; 1971; Assignee: The USA; Abstract: Coal is extracted in quinoline by treatment of a coal-quinoline slurry with ultrasonic irradiation at ambient temperature. ... The solubilized fraction may be used for production of gasoline ..., etc."; it has been known by our United States Government for four decades, that, not only can Coal be converted into liquid hydrocarbon fuels, such as "gasoline", but, an unusual type of energy, ultrasound, can be employed to facilitate the process.

 

 

Herein, by way of demonstrating that our government employees in Pittsburgh weren't entirely out in left field on that one, we submit herein, from a fuel industry development laboratory in Chicago, later confirmation of the fact, that, "ultrasound" can be employed to drive reactions between Coal and Water, serving to help break those substances down into their atomic components, which components can then be catalytically recombined, to synthesize a variety of hydrocarbons.

Comment follows excerpts from the initial link above, to:

"United States Patent 4,954,246 - Gasification of Carbonaceous Materials using Ultrasound

Date: September, 1990

Inventors: Dharamvir Punwani and Michael Mensinger, IL

Assignee: Institute of Gas Technology, Chicago

Abstract: A process for slurry-phase gasification of carbonaceous feedstock materials is provided wherein feedstock materials are combined with a liquid to form a feedstock slurry. Product gases are formed from the feedstock slurry in a gasifier reaction vessel in the presence of elevated temperatures and pressures and ultrasonic energy. Gasification catalysts may be utilized to provide increased reaction rates. The process of the present invention provides enhanced conversion of carbonaceous solids feedstock to gaseous products comprising primarily methane and carbon dioxide with some higher organic liquids.

Claims: A process for slurry-phase gasification of carbonaceous materials comprising: combining solid carbonaceous feedstock materials with a slurry liquid to form a feedstock slurry; conveying said feedstock slurry to a gasifier reaction vessel; gasifying said carbonaceous feedstock in said gasifier vessel in slurry phase at (specified) reaction temperatures (and, specified) pressures and in the presence of water and an effective intensity of ultrasonic waves having a frequency of about 20 kHz to about 55 kHz to form product gases comprising primarily methane and carbon dioxide. 

(And) wherein said carbonaceous materials is selected from the group consisting of coal, ... biomass, and mixtures thereof.

(And) wherein said slurry liquid comprises water.

(And) wherein said gasification catalyst comprises potassium hydroxide.

A process ... wherein said slurry liquid separated from unreacted and spent carbonaceous solids in said solids/liquid separation means is conveyed to a liquid/liquid separation means wherein at least one product liquid selected from the group consisting of heavier hydrocarbons and oxygenated hydrocarbons is separated from said slurry liquid.

(Note, in addition to Methane, this system, as immediately above, co-produces "heavier", we presume liquid, "hydrocarbons" and "oxygenated hydrocarbons", which is techno-speak for Alcohols, and likely includes such valuable products as Methanol and Ethanol.)

(A) process for gasification of solid carbonaceous materials, the improvement comprising: gasifying solid carbonaceous feedstock materials in an aqueous slurry in a gasifier vessel at (specified temperatures and  pressures) and in the presence of an effective intensity of ultrasonic waves (as specified) to form product gases comprising primarily methane and carbon dioxide.

Description and Field: The present invention relates to a process for slurry-phase gasification of carbonaceous materials using ultrasonic treatment. The process of the present invention produces gaseous fuels, primarily methane and carbon dioxide, from carbonaceous materials at temperatures and pressures substantially lower than conventional thermal processes.

Conventional thermal processing techniques for producing gaseous products from carbonaceous materials require severe operating conditions of temperature and pressure to achieve acceptable rates of product formation.

Summary: It is an objective of the present invention to provide a process for the slurry-phase production of gaseous fuels from carbonaceous materials (by) utilizing ultrasonic energy in a slurry-phase gasification process which allows reduced temperatures and/or reduced residence times compared to those required by prior art processes.

It is yet another objective of the present invention to provide an improved process for gasification of carbonaceous solids in a slurry in the presence of a gasification catalyst utilizing ultrasonic treatment.

It is yet another objective of the present invention to provide a process for slurry-phase gasification of carbonaceous materials using ultrasonic treatment which provides enhanced conversion of carbonaceous solids to gaseous products comprising primarily methane and carbon dioxide, and which provides enhanced overall process efficiency.

Carbonaceous materials such as coal, ... biomass, municipal and other wastes, mixtures thereof, and the like, are suitable for use in the process of the present invention.

In some embodiments of this invention it may be desired to separate formed heavier hydrocarbon and oxygenated hydrocarbon liquids from the slurry liquid."

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So, after they have been "formed" by subjecting an "aqueous slurry" of "coal" and Carbon-recycling "biomass, municipal and other wastes", then "heavier hydrocarbon ... liquids" and Alcohols, the "oxygenated hydrocarbon liquids", which we presume would include Methanol and Ethanol; we can "separate" them out; after, it seems, we have, in the described process of  gasification, also generated a mixture of Methane and Carbon Dioxide.

Such "heavier" and "oxygenated hydrocarbon liquids" are not, we submit, bad by-products to have from a system that generates, as perhaps the primary products, a blend of "methane and carbon dioxide".

That, especially when you consider that such a blend of product gases can then be further processed, as seen, for one instance, in: WVU CO2 + CH4 = Hydrocarbon Syngas | Research & Development | News;  concerning: "New Catalysts for Syngas Production from Carbon Dioxide and Methane".

West Virginia University's report explains how such a blend of Methane and Carbon Dioxide, as produced herein by the Chicago process of USP 4,954,246, from mixtures of Coal and various Carbon-recycling organic materials in Water, can be further reacted and made to form a synthesis gas, composed of Carbon Monoxide and Hydrogen, suitable for catalytic condensation, via any number of known and established technologies, into even more liquid hydrocarbons.


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