Commenced in January 2007
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Laboratory Scale Experimental Studies on CO₂ Based Underground Coal Gasification in Context of Clean Coal Technology

Authors: Geeta Kumari, Prabu Vairakannu

Abstract:

Coal is the largest fossil fuel. In India, around 37 % of coal resources found at a depth of more than 300 meters. In India, more than 70% of electricity production depends on coal. Coal on combustion produces greenhouse and pollutant gases such as CO₂, SOₓ, NOₓ, and H₂S etc. Underground coal gasification (UCG) technology is an efficient and an economic in-situ clean coal technology, which converts these unmineable coals into valuable calorific gases. The UCG syngas (mainly H₂, CO, CH₄ and some lighter hydrocarbons) which can utilized for the production of electricity and manufacturing of various useful chemical feedstock. It is an inherent clean coal technology as it avoids ash disposal, mining, transportation and storage problems. Gasification of underground coal using steam as a gasifying medium is not an easy process because sending superheated steam to deep underground coal leads to major transportation difficulties and cost effective. Therefore, for reducing this problem, we have used CO₂ as a gasifying medium, which is a major greenhouse gas. This paper focus laboratory scale underground coal gasification experiment on a coal block by using CO₂ as a gasifying medium. In the present experiment, first, we inject oxygen for combustion for 1 hour and when the temperature of the zones reached to more than 1000 ºC, and then we started supplying of CO₂ as a gasifying medium. The gasification experiment was performed at an atmospheric pressure of CO₂, and it was found that the amount of CO produced due to Boudouard reaction (C+CO₂  2CO) is around 35%. The experiment conducted to almost 5 hours. The maximum gas composition observed, 35% CO, 22 % H₂, and 11% CH4 with LHV 248.1 kJ/mol at CO₂/O₂ ratio 0.4 by volume.

Keywords: Clean Coal Technology, calorific value, syngas, underground coal gasification

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