Fuel Processing Technology, Vol.85, No.14, 1551-1564, 2004
Upgrading of low rank coal with solvent
In this study, thermal upgrading of low-rank coal with solvent at 380-440 degreesC under an initial nitrogen pressure of 2 MPa was studied as a possible method for producing clean solid fuel with a high heating value and less spontaneous ignition behavior. Upgrading of Buckskin coal (USA, subbituminous coal) in the presence of t-decalin (non hydrogen-donor solvent) at 440 degreesC gave 11.4 wt.% of gas, 5.3 wt.% of oil and 74.1 wt.% of upgraded solid product with a small amount of water. The gaseous product consisted mainly of carbon dioxide (67 wt.%), methane, carbon monoxide, hydrogen and a trace of C-2 and C-3 hydrocarbon gases. The oil product from coal contained BTX, phenol, and their alkyl-derivatives. The heating value of the upgraded solid product from the Buckskin coal increased to 31.0 MJ/kg in dry base as compared to the heating value of wet base of the untreated raw coal, which was 19.3 MJ/kg. Spontaneous ignition behavior was greatly reduced by the upgrading. The effect of catalyst and additives on the upgrading was investigated in terms of product distribution and the quality of the solid product. Taiheiyo (Japan, subbituminous) and Yallourn (Australia, brown) coals were also studied. (C) 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.