817.    ELVINS, O. C., AND NASH, A. W.  Reduction of Carbon Monoxide.  Nature, vol. 118, 1926, p. 154; Chem. Abs., vol. 20, 1926, p. 3684.

      Formation of hydrocarbons by passing a mixture of CO and H2 at atmospheric pressure over catalysts has been described by F. Fischer (abs. 1021).  Elvins and Nash have confirmed the formation of liquid hydrocarbons and also have shown the possibility of the synthesis of oxygenated compounds.  A mixture of 53.9% CO and 44.6% H2 at atmospheric pressure was passed over reduced oxides of Mn, Co, and Cu impregnated with 0.5% Li2CO3, at 302°.  1.2 m.3 of gas mixture gave 0.5 gm. of solid and 1.4 gm. of yellow oil insoluble in H2O and H2O-soluble acids equivalent to 0.33 gm. KOH.  Steam distillation from the K salts of the acids gave 0.5 cc. liquid, boiling at 74°-80°, which gave the CHI3 reaction in the cold.  Fischer’s theory of intermediate carbide formation does not explain the formation of oxygenated compounds.  The production of oxygenated compounds and hydrocarbons may be regarded as being preceded by the hypothetical formation of MeOH, which gives CH4 and other substances according to the conditions.  The reaction may proceed in stages, or the catalyst may accelerate one or more of the possible reactions of CO and H2.  When a mixture of aldehydes, ketones, acids, and hydrocarbons is obtained, both courses may be followed.  Most of the products are probably formed simultaneously rather than consecutively.