Describes method and apparatus for producing synthesis gas by complete gasification of lignite or other noncaking carbonaceous material. For example, 1 ton of natural subbituminous coal containing about 22% H2O and having a heating value of only 9,300 B. t. u. per lb. is gasified continuously to produce 45,000 cu. ft. of net synthesis gas in a single stage process that operates automatically. High conversion ranging 60-75% is accomplished. Coal mixed with steam is passed downward through an externally heated, vertically arranged, elongated, annular reaction zone, from which the gaseous products are withdrawn near the zone of maximum reaction temperature and discharged upward in indirect heat exchange to the descending reactants, the spent solids being discharged from a lower annular reaction zone countercurrent to ascending gases, this reaction zone being maintained in indirect heat exchange relation with incoming gaseous reactants. The process is also applicable to the distillation of oil shale.
PASSINO, H. J. See abs. 2013, 2015, 2199, 2200, 2201.