Oxygen access and coal storage

(report on self heating scenarios of coal stacks)
For large enclosed coal storage, three main configurations are available, namely:

  • Longitudinal storage (A-frame shed)
  • Circular storage (Dome Type)
  • Silo storage

Decisive factors in determining the type of storage to be used are initial capital investment, and payback period. However, in addition to the economics, the following factors should be assessed:

  • Spontaneous Combustion
  • Self Heating
  • Minimizing the flow of air through the stack

The storage process as well as the configuration of the coal storage are significant in evaluating the above. The report focuses on the importance of limiting oxygen access to the coal stack, and features the graphical results of complex computations which predict self heating scenarios with different types of coal for a stack with a large and a limited area for oxygen access. The simulation was developed and executed by the Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM) in Berlin. Operational Eurosilo coal storages, such as the underground coal storage facility at Helsinki Energy in Finland, were utilized as touchstone.
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