United States Patent: 8470291

As should be clear from our many reports concerning the matter, as in, for a few examples:

West Virginia Coal Association | Shell Oil Coal + CO2 + H2O = Hydrocarbon Syngas | Research & Development; concerning: "United States Patent 7,829,601 - Partial Oxidation Process of a Solid Carbonaceous Feed; 2010; Inventors: Johannes Ploeg, et. al., The Netherlands; Assignee: Shell Oil Company, Texas; Abstract: The invention is directed to a process for preparing a mixture comprising CO and H2 by operating a partial oxidation process of a solid carbonaceous feed, which process comprises the steps of:(Supplying) the solid carbonaceous feed and an oxygen-containing stream to a burner, wherein a CO2 containing transport gas is used to transport the solid carbonaceous feed to the burner"; and:

West Virginia Coal Association | Shell Oil Converts Coal and CO2-Recycling Biomass to Gasoline | Research & Development; concerning: "United States Patent 7,678,952 - Process to Prepare a Gasoline; 2010;

Inventors: Xander Dupain, et. al., The Netherlands; Assignee: Shell Oil Company, Texas; Claims: A process to prepare a gasoline fuel comprising: contacting a Fischer-Tropsch product with a catalyst system comprising a catalyst, which catalyst comprises an acidic matrix and a large pore molecular sieve, wherein the Fischer-Tropsch product is a product obtained by a Fischer-Tropsch process ... . The Fischer-Tropsch synthesis (of hydrocarbons) may be performed in a slurry reactor or preferably in a fixed bed. Synthesis gas may be obtained by well known processes like partial oxidation and steam reforming and combinations of these processes starting with a (hydro) carbon feedstock. Examples of possible feedstocks are ... coal ... and biomass, for example wood"; and:

West Virginia Coal Association | Shell Oil Converts Coal into Hydrocarbon Synthesis Gas | Research & Development; concerning: "United States Patent 8,308,983 - Process to Prepare a Gas Mixture of Hydrogen and Carbon Monoxide; 2012; Inventors: Guillaume Fournier, et. al., The Netherlands; Assignee: Shell Oil Company, Texas; Abstract: The invention is directed to a process to prepare a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide from an ash containing carbonaceous feedstock (and) wherein the carbonaceous feedstock is coal";

Royal Dutch Shell, or, in the United States, the Shell Oil Company, has been devoting a great deal of effort to the development of technologies wherein Coal, along with Carbon-recycling and renewable resources such as "biomass, for example wood", can be converted into "a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide" for use in the subsequent "Fischer-Tropsch synthesis" of various hydrocarbons.

That, even though there has been some public debate about whether or not Shell is in reality somehow "against" Coal, as suggested by comments accompanying the article:

Low US Natural Gas Price Means More Coal Burning in Europe-Shell – Royal Dutch Shell plc .com;

which insinuate that Shell is in favor of, and promoting, higher "Carbon taxes" in Europe as a way of artificially making natural gas more economically competitive with Coal for the generation of electrical power, a concept which has been suggested and debated as a surreptitious motivating factor behind some of the pushes for Cap and Trade taxes in the US.

And, that, even though, as seen in our report of:

West Virginia Coal Association | Shell Oil June 11, 2013, Coal to Methane | Research & Development; concerning: "United States Patent 8,461,216 - Process for the Co-Production of Superheated Steam and Methane; 2013; Inventors: Lloyd Anthony Clomburg and Anand Nilekar, Texas; Assignee: Shell Oil Company, Houston; Abstract: A process for the co-production of superheated steam and methane includes reacting a gas containing carbon monoxide and hydrogen in a series of methanation regions to produce a product gas containing methane"

Shell Oil has actually developed the technology for synthesizing substitute natural gas Methane, as well as, as in the above-cited "United States Patent 7,678,952 - Process to Prepare a Gasoline", a "gasoline fuel", from a "a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide" as might be produced, again as in "United States Patent 7,678,952", from "coal ... and biomass".

And, Shell keeps improving their technology for producing that "gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide", that hydrocarbon synthesis gas, from Coal, as seen in excerpts from the initial link in this dispatch to the recent:

"United States Patent 8,470,291 - Process To Prepare A Gas Mixture of Hydrogen and Carbon Monoxide

Patent US8470291 - Process to prepare a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide - Google Patents

Process to prepare a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide - Shell Oil Company

June 25, 2013

Inventors: G.G.M. Fournier, et. al., Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Assignee: Shell Oil Company, Houston, Texas

(Shell Oil Company - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia;  a subsidiary of:

Royal Dutch Shell - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia; "the second largest company in the world in terms of revenue".)

Abstract: Process to prepare a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide from an ash containing carbonaceous feedstock by performing the following steps:

(i) partial oxidation of the ash containing carbonaceous feedstock with an oxygen containing gas thereby obtaining liquid ash and a gas mixture comprising hydrogen, carbon monoxide and solids,

(ii) separating more than 90 wt % of the liquid ash from the gas mixture,

(iii) reducing the temperature of the gas mixture, in the absence of the separated ash,

(iv) scrubbing the cooled gas of step (iii) by contacting with liquid water obtaining a scrubbed gas and a water effluent containing ash, (and:)

(v) separating the ash from the water effluent by means of a decanter centrifuge thereby obtaining a wet ash and a stream of water poor in ash.

Claims: A process to prepare a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide from an ash containing carbonaceous feedstock comprising the following steps:

(i) partial oxidation of an ash containing carbonaceous feedstock with an oxygen containing gas thereby obtaining liquid ash and a gas mixture comprising hydrogen, carbon monoxide and solids,

(ii) separating more than 90 wt % of the liquid ash from the gas mixture before reducing the temperature of the gas mixture,

(iii) reducing the temperature of the gas mixture, in the absence of the separated ash, to obtain a cooled gas mixture,

(iv) scrubbing the cooled gas mixture by contacting with liquid water to obtain a scrubbed gas and a water effluent containing ash, and:

(v) separating the ash from the water effluent by means of a decanter centrifuge thereby obtaining a wet ash and a stream of water poor in ash; wherein steps (i) and (ii) are performed in a reactor vessel provided with horizontally firing burner nozzles, which nozzles discharge a gas mixture comprising hydrogen, carbon monoxide and solids into a gasification chamber as present in the reactor vessel, and wherein liquid ash is present on the interior wall of the gasification chamber, wherein the gas mixture is discharged through an opening at the upper end of the gasification chamber and the liquid ash is discharged via an opening at the lower end of the gasification chamber.

A process ... wherein the stream of water poor in ash is recycled to step (iv) ... (and) wherein the decanter centrifuge is nitrogen blanketed to prevent oxidation of sulphur components as present in the water effluent (and) wherein the stream of water poor in ash as obtained in step (v) is further cleaned in a centrifuge to obtain cleaned water.

A process ... wherein the carbonaceous feedstock is coal.

Description and Background: The invention is directed to a process to prepare a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide from an ash containing carbonaceous feedstock.

A disadvantage of (cited prior art processes) is that three types of water effluents are produced, namely a water stream from the hydrocyclone rich in solid ash, a water stream rich in solid ash as disposed from the water bath and water stream less rich in solids as discharged from the same water bath. The number of effluent streams introduce complexity to the water treatment system. There exists a desire to simplify this process.

A further concern with the prior art process is that it does not disclose an efficient re-use of water. Especially in processes, which consume water, like coal to liquids (CTL) processes, re-use of water is important to minimize the consumption of water. Water is required to provide the hydrogen in a coal to liquids process

involving partial oxidation of coal, a water gas shift process step and a Fischer-Tropsch process step.

(There are better ways to provide Hydrogen to the process than the "water gas shift process", which results in the co-production of CO2. For instance, as seen, for only one example, in our report of:

West Virginia Coal Association | USDOE and Delaware Sunshine Extracts Hydrogen from Water | Research & Development; concerning: "United States Patent Application 20130175180 - Devices and Methods for Increasing Solar Hydrogen Conversion Efficiency in Photovoltaic Electrolysis; 2013; University of Delaware; Abstract: Devices and methods for photovoltaic electrolysis are disclosed. Government Interests: This invention was made with Government support ... by the Department of Energy. The Government may have certain rights in this invention";

technologies have been and are being developed which enable the Solar-powered splitting of Water, H2O, into needed supplemental Hydrogen, and Oxygen, via processes of "photovoltaic electrolysis".  Note, however, the final and culminating "Fischer-Tropsch process step" specified by Shell, which results in the synthesis of both liquid and gaseous hydrocarbons.)

The present invention provides a process to prepare a gas mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide from an ash containing carbonaceous feedstock comprising the following steps; (i) partial oxidation of the ash containing carbonaceous feedstock with an oxygen containing gas thereby obtaining liquid ash and a gas mixture comprising hydrogen, carbon monoxide and solids, (ii) separating more than 90 wt % of the liquid ash from the gas mixture, (iii) reducing the temperature of the gas mixture, in the absence of the separated ash, (iv) scrubbing the cooled gas mixture of step (iii) by contacting with liquid water to obtain a scrubbed gas and a water effluent containing ash, (v) separating the ash from the water effluent by means of a decanter centrifuge thereby obtaining a wet ash and a stream of water poor in ash.

The wet ash can be disposed of as ... as a component for cement."

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Concerning the concluding statement, that the "ash can be (used) as a component of cement", we've documented many times that Coal Ash, whether arising from combustion or, as herein, and, as seen in:

West Virginia Coal Association | Standard Oil Converts Coal Conversion Residues into Cement | Research & Development; concerning; "United States Patent 4,174,974 - Process for Converting Coal Ash Slag into Portland Cement; 1979; Assignee: Standard Oil Company of Indiana; Abstract: Disclosed is a manufacturing process for converting coal ash slag from a slagging coal gasifier into a marketable cement product having the characteristics and qualities of portland cement";

from Coal gasification, in a "coal gasifier", for the production of synthesis gas, can be productively consumed in the making of Portland-type cement. In addition, though, as described by Shell Oil themselves in:

West Virginia Coal Association | Shell Oil Coal Conversion Residues to Construction Aggregates | Research & Development; concerning: "United States Patent 4,917,732 - Flyash Treatment; 1990; Assignee: Shell Oil Company; Abstract: A process for production of a flyash-slag composite is described in which, in one embodiment, slag particles are tumbled with an aqueous suspension of finely divided clay, flyash and a cementitious material are added, and the mixture is tumbled to produce the desired composite. A process for producing a flyash-slag composite comprising discrete particles of slag dispersed in a solid mixture comprising: (a) tumbling slag particles with an aqueous suspension of finely divided clay, under conditions effective to provide aggregation, the ratio of slag to said clay, by weight, being from about 15 parts to about 40 parts slag per part of clay, and forming a mixture comprising aggregates of slag and clay in said suspension; (b) adding flyash derived from the gasification of coal to (form) a flyash-aggregate mixture; ... A flyash-slag composite comprising discrete particles of slag dispersed in a solid mixture formed by tumbling, under aggregation conditions, slag, and aqueous suspension of a finely divided clay, flyash derived from the gasification of coal ... carried out in the presence of additional agents such as steam, carbon dioxide, or various other materials. Gasification of coal produces a gas, known as synthesis gas ... . The invention addresses the problem of flyash and slag treatment, accomplishing the treatment and providing a novel composition having properties indicating utilities of greater value than mere landfill";

such Coal gasification Ash can also be consumed in the making of a composite aggregate, which could presumably be added to the Coal Ash cement of "United States Patent 4,174,974 - Process for Converting Coal Ash Slag into Portland Cement", in order to make Portland-type Cement Concrete.

In any case, we have herein what seems a very up-to-date, a very clean and efficient "Process To Prepare A Gas Mixture of Hydrogen and Carbon Monoxide", from Coal; and, which "Hydrogen and Carbon Monoxide" "Gas Mixture" can then be used in "a Fischer-Tropsch process step" to effect the final conversion of "coal to liquids", that is, the conversion of our abundant Coal into increasingly-scarce and increasingly-expensive Hydrocarbon liquids. And, it is in addition to the many other Shell Oil Coal utilization technologies, such as our above-cited report concerning: "United States Patent 8,461,216 - Process for the Co-Production of Superheated Steam and Methane; 2013; Inventors: Lloyd Anthony Clomburg and Anand Nilekar, Texas; Assignee: Shell Oil Company, Houston; Abstract: A process for the co-production of superheated steam and methane includes reacting a gas containing carbon monoxide and hydrogen in a series of methanation regions to produce a product gas containing methane"; wherein the product is substitute natural gas, rather than substitute petroleum.

And, the sum of it all is, as confirmed by both the "the second largest company in the world in terms of revenue" and, through issuance of our subject herein, "United States Patent 8,470,291 - Process To Prepare A Gas Mixture of Hydrogen and Carbon Monoxide", by technical experts in the employ of our own United States Government, none of whom would be wasting any time at all on any of this if it weren't real, practical and valuable, that:

We can efficiently convert our far and away most abundant and most valuable United States fossil fuel resource, Coal, through an initial, and very clean, process of gasification, into anything, quite literally anything, we now endanger our groundwater and our environment by drilling and fracking for and endanger our national security and our economy by importing and purchasing from the too-often inimical foreign nations of OPEC.

The Truth of all of that is undeniable, irrefutable; and, it's far, far past time the United States citizens of United States Coal Country were all accorded their rights to hear that Truth boldly and publicly proclaimed.

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