View Full Version : Nazi Factories turned Coal into Gasoline

Mike Peters
6th October 2011, 10:18 AM
It’s not an unknown process but , it helped fuel the German War Machine right up to the end. Years ago I ended up with a box of Nazi era School and Public Propaganda Posters …one really large one shows the conversion process , a technology they were obviously proud of.

Mike Peters
6th October 2011, 10:21 AM
TIME Magazine did an article on this back in 1977 --
TECHNOLOGY: Recycling Nazi SecretsMonday, Apr. 18, 1977

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,914910,00.html#ixzz1a1FqnRDa

If the U.S. is in an energy bind, consider the one that Nazi Germany faced in the 1930s: it prepared to fight a world war with no secure reserves of oil at all. The Germans' solution was to make oil from coal, and they did that so successfully that after 1944 (when oil supplies from Nazi-aligned Rumania were bombed out) the Luftwaffe planes flew, and the Reich tanks rolled, almost exclusively on coal-derived gasoline. Could the Nazi know-how help the U.S. three decades later?
The question occurred to Professor Richard Wainerdi, a chemical engineer at Texas A. & M. He and a colleague. Historian Arnold Krammer, set out 18 months ago to look up what was known about the German synthetic-oil program. It proved an unexpectedly arduous task.
Not for lack of documents. Because the Germans were compulsive record keepers, the entire history of the program—plant diagrams, patent descriptions, detailed reports on which catalysts and additives work best, even the monthly reports of Hitler's 25 oil-from-coal plants—fell into American hands at the end of the war. But crude oil was available then in ample supply at $2 per bbl., and the man-made oil cost up to five times as much. So the German documents were filed and forgotten. Wainerdi and Krammer found some of the papers in the National Archives in Washington and others stuffed into crates in Government buildings around the country. Until the two men came along, the documents had lain untouched for 30 years.
The Texas A. & M. specialists have located about 300,000 documents, only 15% of which had been catalogued after the war. Dow Chemical, Union Carbide and Diamond Shamrock will help underwrite the massive job of collating all the information and feeding it into a computer at the federally run Oak Ridge Energy Center, where it will be available to anyone who wants it. Already some interesting findings have turned up. For example, German scientists discovered a method of capturing the sulfuric acid released by coal when it is turned into oil; that could point to an important pollution-control technique.
The basic technology for turning coal into oil or gas is known to just about every chemistry graduate student. But until now, it has been considered uneconomic—though a plant built in South Africa with the help of German scientists has been turning out gas from coal for more than 20 years, and some American companies are planning their own installations. Wainerdi and Krammer hope that the Nazi documents will show the way for other firms to avoid whatever mistakes the Germans made and design plants more efficiently. Says Krammer: "Why re-invent the wheel?"

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,914910,00.html#ixzz1a1GJww6C

6th October 2011, 12:40 PM
There are a number of companies today that use this technology, including Sasol in South America, Syntroleum and Shell oil but commercially it is not profitable.

Mike Peters
6th October 2011, 11:18 PM
If we don't start drilling and , Achmed starts raising the prices ...I bet they'll start looking into this again

7th October 2011, 06:44 PM
Mike, thats a great poster I wish I had one. My dad told me all about this process when we had the first big oil "crisis" under Carter. When I tell my friends about the process they look a me like I'm crazy. LOL

Mike Peters
8th October 2011, 08:40 AM
You'd really confuse them if they found out about how common this was in Nazi Germany -- http://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2010/01/wood-gas-cars.html

8th October 2011, 02:03 PM
Great, lets chop down ALL the trees and make Al Gore cry.