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Report - CRE Grroup Ltd Cheltenham April 2010

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by vwdirtboy, Apr 11, 2010.

  1. vwdirtboy

    vwdirtboy Keeuunnntt!
    28DL Full Member

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    Where Coal Research Establishment, Stoke Orchard, Cheltenham

    When 10 April 2010

    Who Spung, kempes, Hpipe, Clebby, Petzl & Myself

    The Coal Research Establishment lies at the heart of the sleepy Gloucestershire village of Stoke Orchard. Surrounded by pretty country cottages the brutal industrial architecture of the research sheds and towering chimneys could seem very out of place in its rural setting, but set back from the main street behind some landscaped gardens and non descript office block the remains of the Coal Research establishment are relatively unnoticed. The establishment was set up in 1950 by British Coal's director of research Jacob Bronowski to investigate alternative technologies to improve the value of the energy produced from burning coal along with completely new methods of using the coal won from the countries coalfields.

    One of the CRE's most notable breakthroughs was a coal Liquefaction process which produced a synthetic oil which could be used to power motor engines. During the 1970's the CRE was home to a Ford Torino fitted with a experimental engine capable of using this oil as a demonstration vehicle. However despite rising oil prices's during the 1970's. Coal liquefaction was expensive process which proved to be uneconomic, it never progressed beyond the research stage and no trace of the mythical coal powered car could be found during the visit. The coal liquefaction facilities are still present at the CRE today, perhaps to the very end of its research days the scientists at the CRE hoped their liquefaction process may become an economic prospect as oil reserves ran low. In fact today a number of international research organisations are pursuing new research projects into Coal Liquefaction.

    When the government decided to privatise the coal producing divisions of British Coal in 1994 the CRE was left in a difficult position the newly privatised and in many cases cashed strapped operators, were unable to fund the CRE's research work and the government was unwilling to spend public money on supporting the coal industry so less than a year later the research operations at Stoke Orchard ceased.


    Hope you like my take on the situation. Enjoy!


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