The effect of preoxidation on the coking properties of Penn-Lee coal

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute

Coal is one of the world's largest remaining mineral resources. The supply of this rich source of fuel and chemicals is sufficient to serve the world for several thousand years. Coal is used directly and is also heat treated at high and low temperatures to produce fuel and by-products. Of the several methods of treatment that can be used, low-temperature carbonization is one of the most promising.

Nearly all of the coke and coal chemicals produced today come from the production of high temperature coke. However, there are many lower rank coals not suited for metallurgical purposes that will produce an excellent char and high yields of by-products. One of the disadvantages of many lower rank coals is their tendency to swell and become plastic when heated to carbonization temperatures, and this property has to a great extent made the operation of the retorts difficult.

In an effort to reduce or circumvent this undesirable property, several methods of pretreating the raw coal have been tried including preoxidation, dilution with non-coking coal, preheating, and weathering. The type and severity of the pretreatments vary in their effects on the coking properties of different coals.

The purpose of this investigation was to study the effect of preoxidation on the coking properties and the quantities and composition of the byproducts and char obtained from the low-temperature carbonization of Penn-Lee coal.