This paper was prepared for the Second Midwest Oil and Gas Industry Symposium of the Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME, to be held in Indianapolis, Ind., March 28–29, 1974. Permission to copy is restricted to an abstract of not more than 300 words. Illustrations may not be copied. The abstract should contain conspicuous acknowledgment of where and by whom the paper is presented. Publication elsewhere after publication in the JOURNAL OF PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY or the SOCIETY OF PETROLEUM ENGINEERS JOURNAL is usually granted upon request to the Editor of the appropriate journal provided agreement to give proper credit is made.

Discussion of this paper is invited. Three copies of any discussion should be sent to the Society of Petroleum Engineers office. Such discussion may be presented at the above meeting and, with the paper, may be considered for publication in one of the two SPE magazines.

Abstract

The new technology for conversion of coal to pipeline gas being developed in the joint Government-Industry program is described. Status of the pilot plant operations is covered along with plans for evaluation and selection of a process for full scale demonstration. Concepts process for full scale demonstration. Concepts of commercial reactors are described along with the major problems in converting the new technology to industrial plants.

PRESENTATION PRESENTATION The nation has become acutely aware of the shortage of domestic sources of oil and natural gas. This has come about as a result of the sudden loss of crude oil from the middle East. However we do not import natural gas from the Middle East. The natural gas shortage was a growing problem for many years before the Middle East crisis. As a result of the oil embargo, the gas problem has become more acute and the urgency of developing new sources of gas has become a critical problem almost overnight. The impending problem of a gas shortage was recognized by some back in the 1950's and work was started at that time to develop processes to convert coal into pipeline gas. In 1960 the office of Coal Research was established in the Department of the Interior to direct the Government's efforts. Research to develop new processes was underway in the 60's in several processes was underway in the 60's in several organizations. These included the Bureau of Mines, Bituminous Coal Research, the Consolidation Coal Company, the Institute of Gas Technology, the Food Machinery Corporation, and others.

By 1970 several new processing concepts had been developed in the laboratories and two of these had reached the stage of pilot plant design. In 1970 a joint Government-Industry program was organized to accelerate the program was organized to accelerate the development of processes for converting coal to pipeline gas. The agreement between the pipeline gas. The agreement between the American Gas Association and the Government's office of Coal Research was for a four year program to develop promising new processes program to develop promising new processes through the pilot plant stage.

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