Technological Advances in Coal Combustion Products and Emissions: Dry Extraction and Effective Utilization

Kolkata- India

In India the main source of fuel, as in the rest of the world, continues to be coal. Correspondingly, as research and innovation endure, coal combustion products continue to increase in utilization in a competitive world facing mineral shortages.

India is known to have some of the dirtiest coal in the world, with high ash outputs. According to the latest report of the Central Electricity authority, between April and September 2015, 132 thermal power plants (TPPs) of 58 Utility Companies having an installed capacity of 130,428 MW consumed 251.69 million tons of coal with an average ash content of 33.23%. This led to generation of 83.64 million tons of coal ash, out of which only 46.87 million tons (or 56.04%) was gainfully utilized.

The consensus in India, as well as China, another top consumer of coal is this: the infrastructure transformation from coal energy to newer energy including solar and wind will take at least three more decades to create. In the mean time, bridging the gap between generation and utilization of coal ash and cleaning coal before combustion continues to be the current agenda.

As coal ash is broken down into two parts, bottom ash that takes up approximately 20%, and fly ash, the more widely used fly ash at 80% of all ash output.

Current common wet extraction practices of bottom ash are now making way for newer dry practices where the cost and inefficiencies of having to dry the ash before use are no longer hindrances to change in infrastructure. Equipment manufacturers in India and China are beginning to implement new machinery that is able to extract, cool and convey the ash in a dry state. Systems like Magaldi’s MAC Ash Cooler, Qingdao Songling’s DAP Dry Ash Processor, Clyde Bergemann’s DRYCON , United Conveyor Corporation’s VAX Vibratory Ash Extraction, etc. are operational worldwide but with limited appearance in the Indian TPPs.

This year’s Asia-Pacific Conclave has therefore chosen the dry extraction and effective utilization of bottom ash as the primary focus area. The Conclave will take place March 17-18 in Kolkata, India. The Conclave will focus on the above mentioned topics as well as hazardous emissions. Legislation as recent as December 2015 in India is targeting the cleaning of coal through emissions. The notification states that as of January 2017, emission norms must be as follows :

Particulate Matter 30mg/Nm3; SO2 100mg/Nm3; NOx 100 mg/Nm3 and Hg 0.03mg/Nm3. In fact, the PM, SOx and NOx values in the new plants are prescribed to be substantially lower than the existing units, for which the PM, SOx and NOx limits are 100, 600 and 600 mg/Nm3 respectively.

The Conclave intends to deal with the best available technologies for emission control and lowering the amount of water required per megawatt of power generated.

AsianCAA will be bringing a delegation to support and help facilitate academic and commercial exchange at the upcoming Conclave.

Check out our upcoming events page to learn more!