ACARP ACARP ACARP ACARP
Coal Preparation

Towards Better Fine Coal Classification

Coal Preparation » Fine Coal

Published: June 20Project Number: C27012

Get ReportAuthor: Matthew Swanson, Michael O’Brien, Andrew Swanson | QCC Resources

It is well recognised that the efficient classification of fine coal in the range of 0.04 - 0.3 mm is a key technology area to improve the efficiency of coal preparation. ACARP has invested substantially in the area of fine coal classification, and in order to maximise the benefits of past projects, an initial part of this project was to summarise the findings from completed projects, to understand the shortcomings, conduct a wider literature survey and distil the relevant findings as a basis to move forward on. Generally, this project aimed to better position the industry with respect to understanding the current state of the art with respect to fine coal classification, and to identify future areas for research efforts. Discussions with suppliers and operators indicated there is a great deal of interest in this area.

Cyclones are at the heart of all fine coal classification and there has been few advances in this area, apart from improved modelling some 15-20 years ago. There looks to be no blue sky technology improvements in this area, and so there should be a renewed effort to model cyclone performance, especially in light of variable feed conditions, to improve application engineering and plant control methodology. Improved on-line instrumentation and timely, reliable analyses of process streams would be of great benefit to plant operators and OEMs alike.

As part of the project, representatives from vendors and plant operations were approached to discuss the current and future state of fine coal classification. Questions covered the most appropriate technologies, key challenges, future developments, and where research should be focused. Across both groups, there was a general view that using large diameter, low pressure cyclones was a poor choice, that minimised capital and operating costs at the expense of process efficiency.

Sievebends were generally acknowledged as the current industry leader for performing larger cutpoints, although a number of the plant operators expressed challenges with the maintenance requirements. There was significant interest in technologies like the Derrick Screen to address some of these shortcomings. The variation in feed quantity and quality was identified as a key challenge in fine coal classification, especially as hydrocyclone performance and cutpoint are strongly influenced by the feed characteristics.

To develop a value proposition for further R&D into the fine coal classification, it is necessary to understand how sensitive total plant yield is to variations in classification efficiency and circuit configuration. A desktop analysis has been undertaken using Limn: The Flowsheet Processor, to estimate the impact of hydrocyclone performance, and alternative fine coal classification configurations, on plant yield for a constant ash. Two CPP configurations were considered, a typical Hunter Valley DMC/spirals plant and a typical Queensland DMC/spirals/flotation plant. Six feed samples were used as the basis of the study, three from Queensland and three for NSW, and three of the samples were considered to have high levels of ultrafine clays, while three were considered to have low levels of ultrafine clays.

One of the objectives of the project was to provide a framework for plant operators and designers to make the best choices for fine coal classification equipment/installation. The survey results and simulation outcomes describe the issues to be considered when considering different fine coal classification duties.

Underground

Health and safety, productivity and environment initiatives.

Recently Completed Projects

C28026Measuring The Height Of Fracturing Above Extracted Longwall Panels To Improve Reliability Of Groundwater Impact Predictions

Longwall mining is a mining method widely used in the Australian und...

C25059Development Of An Intrinsically Safe, Integrated Wireless Communications Network With A Distributed Array Of Geotechnical Sensors

For over 20 years, SCT Operations (SCT) have provided a range of ind...

C26051An On-Machine Bolting And Geotechnical Monitoring System

The primary objective of this project was to investigate how laser s...

Underground

Open Cut

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

Recently Completed Projects

C27046Estimation Of True Deformation Vector From Slope Radar Monitoring

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

C29003Wear Debris Removal From Dragline Commutators

The original aim of this project was to establish a method of removi...

C28037Local Scale Dispersion Modelling To Support ACARP Emission Factors

There remains significant concern in the industry regarding the accu...

Open Cut

Coal Preparation

Maximising throughput and yield while minimising costs and emissions.

Recently Completed Projects

C27032Coal Grain Analysis Applications Handbook

This Handbook sets out recommended practices for using coal grain an...

C26012Improved Flotation Recovery Via Controlling Froth Behaviour

There is no real-time measurement for coal flotation performance, ma...

C27012Towards Better Fine Coal Classification

It is well recognised that the efficient classification of fine coal...

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

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...

C27008Selective Absorption Of Methane By Ionic Liquids

The connection of a ventilation air methane (VAM) abatement plant di...

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