Chemical and Electrochemical Coal Cleaning in acidic medium application and analysis of the process

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Virginia Tech

The Chemical and Electrochemical Coal Cleaning (CECC) process, designed to remove mineral matter from coal, has been investigated by treating coal samples in acidified slurries. Various coals, characterized by different maceral structures and mineral matter contents, were subjected to several experimental procedures under mild conditions.

Substantial amounts of mineral matter (up to 70%) could be extracted from coals which were resistant to physical cleaning, while 22% of sulfur could be removed from pyritic coals. The operating conditions of the CECC were studied in order to determine their influence on the process efficiency.

Analyses conducted on solids and leachates resulting from the tests demonstrated that different mechanisms were achieving demineralization by the CECC. Between 50% and 95% of the feed mineral matter was removed by dissolution, whereas the balance could be ascribed to liberation. The CECC process is suitable for cleaning middlings, as well as for further extracting mineral matter from physically clean coals, especially from pyritic vitrinite and fusinite type coals.