United States Patent: 4976940


We have many times documented the fact that any Hydrogen needed for the hydrogenation and liquefaction of Coal, and of the liquids derived from Coal, can itself be produced via reactions between hot Coal and plain old H2O.


Although we are instinctively drawn to technologies, such as we've already documented for you a number of times, wherein the Steam gasification of Coal is all that's needed to produce a fully-hydrogenated hydrocarbon synthesis gas suitable for direct catalytic conversion into liquid hydrocarbon fuels, herein, from the former USBM outpost, now a component of the USDOE, in Morgantown, WV, is further confirmation of just how additional Hydrogen, if needed for whatever purpose, can be manufactured by starting with Coal.

Comment, with a perhaps interesting take, follows excerpts from:


"United States Patent 4,976,940 - Method for Producing H2


Date: December, 1990


Inventor: Leland Paulson, Morgantown, WV


Assignee: The USA as represented by the DOE


Abstract: A method of producing hydrogen by an endothermic steam-carbon reaction using a rotating drum reactor and a pulse jet combustor. The pulse jet combustor uses coal dust as a fuel ... . Low-rank coal, water, limestone and catalyst are fed into the drum reactor where they are heated, tumbled and reacted. Part of the reaction product from the rotating drum reactor is hydrogen which can be utilized in suitable devices.


Claims:  A method of producing hydrogen by an endothermic steam-carbon reaction (by)rotating an annular drum reactor about an axis; heating said reactor by a source of heat disposed at a location external to said reactor and generated along said .. reactor; feeding a fuel including coal dust to the pulse jet combustor to heat the tailpipe for effecting the heating of the rotating drum reactor (and) feeding char or low-rank coal, water, and a catalyst into said rotating drum reactor where they are heated by the source of heat external to the reactor, tumbled and endothermically reacted to form gaseous reaction products; and withdrawing hydrogen as part of the reaction products from said reactor.


As compared to conventional gasification systems, the present invention has the advantage that it eliminates steam, oxygen and waste water treatment plants. Also, the present method is relatively simple and inexpensive."



First, we suggest to you that one of the most "suitable devices" in which the Hydrogen, produced from "char or low-rank coal" via this "simple and inexpensive" invention, could and should be used, is a hydro-treating unit intended to upgrade, via standard petroleum refinery techniques, hydrocarbon liquids derived from Coal.


Further, note that  "char", in addition to "low-rank" and perhaps otherwise un-useable Coal, is specified to be reacted with Steam to produce the Hydrogen.


We submit that such "char" is exactly what would be produced, as we have previously documented to be the case, from an indirect Coal conversion process, wherein a synthesis gas is generated by heating raw Coal, with or without the addition of Water, and which synthesis gas is, subsequently, catalytically condensed into liquid hydrocarbons.


Again: Hydrogen produced, by this WV/USDOE process, from such Coal conversion residual char, could then be used to upgrade the hydrocarbon liquids produced from Coal via the indirect Coal conversion process that generated the char as a by-product in the first place.

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