ACARP ACARP ACARP ACARP
Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

Cogeneration for Mine Water Management

Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation » Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

Published: July 06Project Number: C14078

Get ReportAuthor: Andrew Beath | CSIRO Exploration & Mining

Mitigation of mine methane streams and management of mine water are two important environment issues for coal mines in Australia.  Technologies such as gas engines using high concentration mine methane and the Megtec Vocsidizer using low concentration methane are being applied as alternative power generation methods.  Commonly, there is an exhaust gas stream from methane mitigation plants that has an elevated temperature and could be potentially used as a source of energy for mine water management via desalination.  This study examines two case studies based on current mine methane mitigation technologies to determine if thermal desalination technologies could feasibly be applied to utilise the waste heat.  These are generically based on the 7MW gas engine plant operating at Tahmoor Mine and the 5-6MW Megtec Vocsidizer plant being installed at West Cliff Colliery.

A review of thermal desalination technologies suggested that reliable performance and costing data could only be acquired for conventional plants based on either evaporator units or heat exchanger-flash tank units connected in series.  Vapour compression can be used to increase the heating value of vapour from the evaporator and crystalliser units can be incorporated to produce a high solids content product for disposal.  The study indicated that the use of waste heat from mine methane mitigation processes for desalination of mine water is technically feasible.  Multiple effect evaporation (MEE), multi-stage flash (MSF) and mechanical vapour compression (MVC) technologies for desalination are mature technologies and can be coupled to waste heat from either gas engine or Vocsidizer plants using mine methane.  These types of thermal desalination technology have even been proven at the Debiensko mines in Poland and on coal contaminated water at the Bayswater site in the Hunter Valley NSW.  However, at both these sites there have been issues with poor performance due to water chemistry and plant arrangement problems. There are alternative thermal desalination technologies, but these have only been demonstrated on a small scale and insufficient data is available to indicate cost and feasibility of an industrial size installation.

Despite the apparent technical feasibility of the process, there are a number of significant issues with the use of thermal technologies in this application that need to be considered.  Desalinated water production rates are very low when using waste heat from power plants of 5-7MW output and there is a poor economy of scale and high unit cost for production from the associated desalination plant.  The best financial performance is for a 2-stage desalination and crystallisation process with mechanical vapour compression using the exhaust gas from gas engines as a heat source, which should produce approximately 0.338ML of water per day at $3601/ML.  It is expected that a cost of production of approximately $1000/ML or less is required for economic viability of a process configuration.  In addition, impurities in the water are likely to result in contamination of the solid salt products of the process, limiting the potential value for sales to provide an additional income stream.  This would have a significant impact on the financial viability of the plant and reducing the contaminants to acceptable levels is likely to require additional pre-treatment stages that will further damage the economic viability of the process.  All performance characteristics determined are influenced by the water quality and reliability of the methane mitigation plant. 

Underground

Health and safety, productivity and environment initiatives.

Underground

Open Cut

Safety, productivity and the right to operate are priorities for open cut mine research.

Recently Completed Projects

C19024Establishing Ecologically Sustainable Mine Water Release Criteria In Seasonally Flowing Streams

Extreme rainfall conditions in the Fitzroy Catchment over an approxi...

C25030Coal Mine Open Pit Final Void Closure And Relinquishment - Addressing Uncertainty In Coal Mine Environmental Planning

This report addresses uncertainties faced by coal mine operators whe...

C27046Estimation Of True Deformation Vector From Slope Radar Monitoring

Slope deformation radar monitors are now widely used in open cut coa...

Open Cut

Coal Preparation

Maximising throughput and yield while minimising costs and emissions.

Recently Completed Projects

C27004Improving Coal Flotation With Oscillatory Air Supply

This report provides detailed information on coal flotation with os...

C25018Improving Solids Recovery And Moisture Reduction In Ultrafine Coal Dewatering

This report provides detailed information on fine coal dewatering in...

C27028Lab Froth Flotation Testing Guide With Coal Quality

Correct outcomes from laboratory froth flotation testing in coal bor...

Coal Preparation

Technical Market Support

Market acceptance and emphasising the advantages of Australian coals.

Recently Completed Projects

C26039Nanoporosity In Cokes: Their Origin, Control And Influence On CO2 Reactivity

This project using the outcomes of previous project C24060, examine...

C28063A Comprehensive Technical Review Of High-Efficiency Low-Emission (HELE) Pulverised Coal Combustion Technologies For Power Generation

Research and development has been undertaken worldwide to realise co...

C28064Carbon Structure Transformation During Coking Of Australian Coking Coals: Better Understanding The Coke Formation

Carbon structures of coke that are formed during the plastic layer a...

Technical Market Support

Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions from the production of coal.

Recently Completed Projects

C28076Selective Absorption Of Methane By Ionic Liquids (SAMIL) - Phase 2 Demonstration In A Packed Bed Reactor

An alternative approach to high temperature oxidation of ventilation...

C26004CFD Modelling Of Reverse Thermal Oxidisers For VAM Abatement - CFD Modelling Of Fixed-Bed RTO Devices

The project is part of a larger multi‐phase program of study a...

C27058Technological Assessment Of A Recycle Reactor For VAM Abatement

Underground coal mining emits high volumes of methane, diluted in ve...

Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

Low Emission Coal Use

Step-change technologies aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Recently Completed Projects

C17060BGasification Of Australian Coals

Four Australian coals were trialled in the Siemens 5 MWth pilot scale ga...

C17060AOxyfuel Technology For Carbon Capture And Storage Critical Clean Coal Technology - Interim Support

The status of oxy-fuel technology for first-generation plant is indicate...

C18007Review Of Underground Coal Gasification

This report consists of a broad review of underground coal gasification,...

Low Emission Coal Use

Mining And The Community

The relationship between mines and the local community.

Recently Completed Projects

C16027Assessing Housing And Labour Market Impacts Of Mining Developments In Bowen Basin Communities

The focus of this ACARP-funded project has been to identify a number...

C22029Understanding And Managing Cumulative Impacts Of Coal Mining And Other Land Uses In Regions With Diversified Economies

The coal industry operates in the context of competing land-uses that sh...

C23016Approval And Planning Assessment Of Black Coal Mines In NSW And Qld: A Review Of Economic Assessment Techniques

This reports on issues surrounding economic assessment and analysis ...

Mining And The Community

NERDDC

National Energy Research,Development & Demonstration Council (NERDDC) reports - pre 1992.

Recently Completed Projects

1609-C1609Self Heating of Spoil Piles from Open Cut Coal Mines

Self Heating of Spoil Piles from Open Cut Coal Mines

1301-C1301Stress Control Methods for Optimised Development...

Stress Control Methods for Optimised Development and Extraction Operations

0033-C1356Commissioned Report: Australian Thermal Coals...

Commissioned Report: Australian Thermal Coals - An Industry Handbook

NERDDC