Ex parte PAGANI et al. - Page 2

          Appeal No. 1997-2353                                       Page 2           
          Application No. 08/405,912                                                  

               Appellants' invention relates to a method of producing                 
          urea with the aim of increasing the production capacity while               
          reducing energy consumption (specification, page 2).  An                    
          understanding of the invention can be derived from a reading                
          of exemplary claim 1, which is reproduced below.                            
               1.   A continuous process of producing urea comprising                 
          the steps of:                                                               
               - reacting ammonia and carbon dioxide in a first reaction              
          space at high temperature and pressure, the ammonia/carbon                  
          dioxide ratio being less than 3;                                            
               - effecting a gas stripping with said carbon dioxide of a              
          first reaction mixture leaving said first reaction space;                   
               - feeding the stripped first reaction mixture to a first               
          urea recovery section;                                                      
               - feeding high purity ammonia and carbon dioxide to a                  
          second reaction space;                                                      
               - feeding a second reaction mixture including urea,                    
          carbamate and unreacted ammonia leaving said second reaction                
          space, to a second recovery section;                                        
               - separating urea, carbamate and unreacted ammonia in                  
          said second recovery section;                                               
               - recycling the carbamate and unreacted ammonia leaving                
          said second recovery section respectively to said first and                 
          second reaction spaces.                                                     
               The prior art references of record relied upon by the                  
          examiner in rejecting the appealed claims are:                              

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