• Current state-of-the-art in drying low-rank coals

      Rao, P.D. and Wolff, E.N. (University of Alaska Mineral Industry Research Laboratory, 1976)
      Research on drying of low-rank coals, such as lignites and subbituminous coals, has been conducted for nearly half a century. Although partial drying of Dakota lignite is practiced for freeze-proofing by mixing partially dried coal with run-of-mine coal, full scale drying of low rank coals has never been practiced commercially in this country. The reasons are: ( 1 ) drying of low rank coals by conventional methods results in severe degradation of coal particles; (2) dried coals are thus dusty and difficult to handle; (3) reabsorption of moisture in storage and transit defeats the drying process. In addition the dry coal particles will react with ambient oxygen, and heat up enough to ignite. It appears that large-scale development of Alaskan coals may have to await solutions to these problems. Our Mineral Industry Research Laboratory at the University of Alaska is making a comprehensive literature search seeking solutions to these problems and identifying areas of research that should be undertaken.