Ex parte NAGEL et al. - Page 1



                         The opinion in support of the decision being entered today was not                 
                        written for publication and is not binding precedent of the Board.                 
                                                                                  Paper No. 27              

                             UNITED STATES PATENT AND TRADEMARK OFFICE                                      
                                               _______________                                              
                                 BEFORE THE BOARD OF PATENT APPEALS                                         
                                            AND INTERFERENCES                                               
                                               _______________                                              
                                      Ex parte CHRISTOPHER J. NAGEL,                                        
                                             THOMAS P. GRIFFIN,                                             
                                           THOMAS A. KINNEY and                                             
                                               KEVIN A. SPARKS                                              
                                               ______________                                               
                                            Appeal No. 1997-0159                                            
                                      Application 08/172,579                                                
                                               _______________                                              
                                      ON BRIEF                                                              
                                               _______________                                              
            Before JOHN D. SMITH, OWENS, and SPIEGEL, Administrative Patent Judges.                         
            JOHN D. SMITH, Administrative Patent Judge.                                                     
                                                                                                           
                                            DECISION ON APPEAL                                              
                   This is an appeal pursuant to 35 U.S.C.  134 from the final rejection of claims         1
            through 15, 26 and 27.                                                                          
                   Claim 1 is representative and is reproduced below:                                       
                   1.  A method for reforming hydrocarbons into shorter-chain unsaturated organic           
            compounds, comprising the steps of:                                                             
                   a) providing a molten metal bath, said molten metal bath consisting essentially of an    
            elemental metal which can cause cleavage of at least one carbon-carbon bond of a                
            hydrocarbon component of a hydrocarbon-containing feed;                                         

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