[News and Views]


    AN agreement between the I.G. Farbenindustrie (the German Dye Trust) and the Standard Oil Company of New Jersey for the exploitation of a new process for the production of synthetic petrol which the I.G. has evolved, was reported in the Times of Aug. 11. This agreement relates solely to the American markets, and further negotiations, it was stated, may be expected with European countries in respect of the realisation of the patent rights concerned. Much speculation appears to have arisen as to the precise nature of the process in question, as only the most meagre information has been officially forthcoming. But the few details provided in the Times report are sufficient to identify it with reason able certainty as that which forms tho basis of a group of very recent, patent applications emanating from the T.G. This new process, described as the destructive hydrogenation of carbonaceous materials, appears to comprise nothing more than a develop ment of the well-known Borgius method, according to which coal or similar material is subjected to thermal decomposition in the presence of hydrogen under pressure to produce hydrocarbon mixtures of the nature of petroleum. But whereas berginisation is essentially non-catalytic, the new process is based upon tho discovery that the introduction of certain catalysts leads to the formation of more valuable hydrocarbons, with increased yields and at an enhanced rate,

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    [News and Views]. Nature 120, 268–272 (1927). https://doi.org/10.1038/120268a0

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