Anthracite Coal Quality

Anthracite Coal Quality

PostBy: Yanche On: Fri Feb 02, 2007 4:47 pm

I'm hoping on buying a tractor trailer load of pea sized Anthracite coal this summer. Obviously I don't want 25 tons of poor quality coal, but I don't really know to contract for quality coal. Pennsylvania maps the anthracite mining region into four geographic fields, "Southern", "Western Middle", "Eastern Middle" and "Northern" Fields. In each there are underground coal mines and open surface mines. Is the quality of the coal different from the different coal fields? If so which is the best? Is there a difference in coal quality if it comes from a underground mine or a surface mine? Note, I'm talking about coal quality not how well the breaker or colliery processes it. I'm guessing but wouldn't underground mined coal have an advantage? Extracting coal just from a coal vein rather than stripping away everything and then trying to sort out just the coal. Since only a small fraction of the Anthracite mined is for residential heating does this market get the best or worst of the coal quality? How do you tell a good coal processor from a bad one? Any help would be appreciated.

Yanche
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Pea

Re: Anthracite Coal Quality

PostBy: Richard S. On: Fri Feb 02, 2007 5:26 pm

Yanche wrote:Is the quality of the coal different from the different coal fields? If so which is the best?


Yes to some degree, if you get coal out of the Hazelton area they have what amounts to the "best".

Note, I'm talking about coal quality not how well the breaker or colliery processes it.


That's probably the most important factor. There's that old saying you "can't polish a turd" but in this case you can to some degree. You can put some pretty poor quality raw product through and have a decent run. The key there being that they can recover enough usable product to make it worth it.

I'm guessing but wouldn't underground mined coal have an advantage? Extracting coal just from a coal vein rather than stripping away everything and then trying to sort out just the coal.


Although they try and run nothing but coal even deep mined is going to have some amount rock and other undesirable material. The good and bad have to be separated at the breaker no matter where it's coming from.

Since only a small fraction of the Anthracite mined is for residential heating does this market get the best or worst of the coal quality?


Unless you have a special order in the anthracite you are getting will be the same as the other guy. They have a standard product that they sell to everyone. If you are buying huge quantities you can special order it to whatever specs you want, this is done occasioanlly where I get my coal but it's a lower quality. the customer is getting a discount, most likely it's for a factory or some industrial appplication.

You want to look for ash content, 9-10 is good. Anything below 9 and it's premium stuff.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite