The objectives of this study were: (1) To determine whether the use of the differential thermal method could increase the knowledge of the reactions which take place when lignites are heated under controlled conditions; (2) to study the relationship of heating curves of related materials to those of lignite; and (3) to correlate the X-ray patterns of lignites with the differential thermal curves of lignites and similar materials.The differential thermal method is limited to the identification of the reactions on heating as being either endothermic or exothermic, and supplementary work sometimes is necessary to identify products of these reactions. The principle of differential thermal analysis is the measurement of the difference in temperature between that of a reacting sample and that of an inert material as they both are heated. A plot of differential thermal temperature vs. sample temperature illustrates reactions involving the exchange of heat.

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