THE ninth Autumn Research Meeting of the Institution of Gas Engineers in London on November 2 and 3 had an interest above the average. The Institution research organizations have hitherto concerned themselves with current technical problems. This year the fortieth and forty-first reports of the Joint Research Committee of the Institution and the University of Leeds deal with problems of the future, and offer a glimpse of a cherished ideal of the gas industry, namely, the complete conversion of coal into a gas suitable for general distribution. Seventeen years ago, at a meeting of the Institution, gasification with oxygen and steam was visualized as an approach to this problem. Cost of oxygen and unsuitability of composition of the gas offered obstacles then un surmountable. In the meantime, the oxygen production has been improved and cheapened. High-pressure technique has also shown the possibility of synthesizing hydrocarbons. In Germany, the Lurgi Company has built and operated a high-pressure producer whereby the town of Hirschfelde is supplied with gas made from lignite. In the forty-first leport, on experiments made by Dr. F. J. Dent, it is disclosed that solid fuel can be freely hydrogenated to gaseous paraffin hydrocarbons at quite moderate pressures.