A process and apparatus are disclosed for conversion of .beta.-hydroxy carbonyl compounds forming useful conversion products including, e.g., acrylic acid [CAS No. 79-10-7], acrylates, and acrylamide [CAS No. 79-06-01]. Conversion products find use, e.g., as feedstock and/or end-use chemicals.
 This invention was made with Government support under Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) Number PNNL-217 between Battelle, as operator of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory under U.S. Department of Energy Contract DE-AC0676RLO-1830, and Cargill, Inc. The Government has certain rights in the invention.