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M.A., Ph.D., F.N.I., GeologicalSurvey of India.
Coal comprises a series of substances the classification of which has been attempted for many decades past. The need for some type of fairly widely acceptable classification has been felt for specifications in trade, for purposes of taxation and customs, and in legal disputes. This paper gives a short review of the numerous attempts which have been made in this direction. Any acceptable scheme of classification should be scientific and systematic and should take into account the fundamental characters. It should be easily comprehensible and applicable. The criteria should be capable of quantitative measurements leaving nothing to mere opinions and personal factors. Even if applied for purely commercial purposes, it should be sufficiently systematised. The earliest classifioation recognised the visual characters, agreeing broadly with the properties of combustion, viz. :Lignite or brown coal: Brown to black in oolour, woody structure, high moisture. Bituminous coal: Black, often banded; ignites fairly easily and burns with flame and smoke. Those which had a strong tendency to agglutinate on heating were called caking coal. Anthracite: Black and lustrous and difficult to ignite; burns without flame. Regnault was the first to use a chemical olassifioation. He published a paper in 1837 in which he defined 5 groups on the basis of ultimate analysis (percentage of O+N). Per cent Mean (O+N) Anthracite 2·62 4·47 Lean or short flame bituminous Bituminous (smithy) coal 5·74 8·89 Long flame bituminous 16·39 Dry long flame Hilt and others classified 00801 on the basis of volatile matter and coking property. The late Prof, W. A. Bone modified the scheme of Regnault and published the revision in his well-known book on coal. This is reproduced in Table 1. In a report printed in 1844, Walter R. Johnson listed the coals of the United States of America in the order of the ratio of the fixed carbon to the volatile matter, which was found to have a definite relationship to the heat evolved in burning as measured by the amount of water evaporated. The 'fuel ratio' had its origin then.
VOL. VI-No.3. [Published August 22nd, 1940.
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Bituminous J.TION OF COA. Bituminous H. proposed a classification in 1904 based on the ratio of C to H. as shown in Table 3. Seyler's classification is given in Table 2. Lignite K. The analyses were reduced to a 'pure coal' basis. Bituminous I. the recurrence of hydrogen percentage in different groups produced coals with closely resembling characters. Graphite B. a great authority on coal in the United States Geological Survey. in which he made use of ultimate analyses. KRISHNAN: CLASSIFICA. His divisions were:Fuel ratio.. P. Anthracite O. Bituminous G. S. carbonaceous and bituminous. and the total carbon in those of lower rank. ex. Coals with over 84 per cent C were grouped into three genera called anthracite. Those with over 84%C were regrouped into genera according to the percentage of hydrogen.e.L.8 Semi-bituminous 8. F.M. Frazer (1887) used the fuel ratio on the lines followed by H. A.5 Bituminous 5-0 As this was based on Pennsylvania coals. ortho.M. to ? 30 26 23 20 17 14·4 12·5 11·2 9·3 7·2 ? to 30 to 26 to 23 to 20 to 17 to 14·4 to 12·5 to ll·2 to 9·3 to F. Grout in 1907 proposed a classification based on the percentage of fixed carbon in the dry. Olass. after an intensive study of South Wales coal. Semi-bituminous F. Dry anthracite 100-12 Semi anthracite 12. drew up a classification in 1901. His investigations showed that the hydrogen content and volatile matter bore some relationship of the type: H = a+b log V. i. Peat L. Campbell. 0: H ratio. (both Hand V. Wood TABLE 3. C. Marius R.552 M.and para-bituminous. His scheme of 1909 was as follows:- . Semi-anthracite E. Those with C 75-84 per cent were called lignitous. C. no coals oflower rank than bituminous were considered. D. When the oxygen was not high. Seyler. H. on pure coal basis). Anthracite D. ash-free coal in the coals of higher rank. A. Rogers a few years previously. 0 and N making up 100. The bituminous coals were subdivided into three-s-meta-.
15. The volatile carbon was the difference between the total carbon and the fixed carbon. which was again revised in 1928.500--14.000 .U. W.500 15. He used the following formulae:it BTU _ (Indicated B.000--16.M. in the pure dry coal.M.500 14. In 1922.000 11.C. = V. Umt '7 v0 I '1 _ [V. % Fixed carbon.000 12.500 9. 100-(1. S.-Parr's classification.08 Ash+0. which will be seen from Table 5. was got by subtracting from 100 thc percentages of C.500 15.T. . Parr drew up a new classification based on the ratio of volatile carbon to total carbon expressed as a percentage. ash.T.000--12. and multiplying the remainder by 100 100-(Ash+moisture) .000--11.) is the characteristic property of the lower rank coals. For lower rank coals the percentage of inert volatile matter was used and this.000--16.000--16. S.U. 0--8 8-12 12-24 25--50 30--55 35--60 35--60 55--80 Unit coal B. Parr's unit coal is pure coal.T.000--15.) The basis of the classification was therefore V~j. TABLE 5. Total C. Class.as determined-(0'08 Ash+0·48)]1O ati e matter 100-(1.-508) X 100 U m . In Parr's scheme the percentage of unit volatile matter is useful in the higher rank coals whereas the unit calorific value (unit coal B.C. KRISHNAN": CLASSIFICATION OF COAL..500 15. Parr published a revised classification making use of his 'unit coal'. Anthracite Semi -anbhracite Bituminous A Bituminous B Bituminous C Bituminous D Lignite Peat % unit V. coal.M.U. % Graphite Anthracite Semi-anthracite Semi-bituminous Bituminous Sub-bituminous Cannel Lignite Peat Over 99 Over 93 83 to 93 73 to 83 47 to 73 47 to 73 35 to' 47 30 to 55 .558) . 553 In dry ash-free Class.Below 50 80 to 88 73'6 to 80 73·6 to 88 65 to 73 Below 65 In 1906 S.08 Ash+0'558) .000--16. (C-F.. X 100. TABLE 4. H20 and available H.
..~ -Q -Q . ~ . Lower diagram: Composition of different ranks of coal on ash-free basis. t: II) t.Q <tJ . E5 U 0) Dt..CO 0 '" / \) ~5-.. Upper diagram: Calorific values of different ranks of coal...... / Il) §-- .. ~ . RRISHNAN: CLASSIFICATION OF COAL..IU 10 3'Z .....) .. ":) ~ § FIG..~ . I". In the second were plotted C....:' I <. .._ _ ~~ <\I ('I) 8 5'0 . -. Ctl t.. '" 00 'Io. D.J ~ ~ i III t.. S... I ~I Q..~ ~ <t') :::...... s ~ 't<::) C .. -0 ~9~ . C // ~ /:::.. H.::. 0) co co C 0 <t') .........554 M. based on the ash-free coal with moisture as mined.... Hand 0 totalled up to 100.... .... (After M.:..'" " r" '. I / / / / 12000 \. B~ O~ .......... ~ .. /CI) .. 0 -s: 11 I. / / ~ C) ..t. O.. " . R. 2..000 7 3'0 c <0 ('I) co q) 0 '} ..J <l' I() <I) XIU c. ~ ..... C\I /. C C\? ~ '4. .~ '" r.~ .. ::i .. _-- ' ---- r. "'1-1 cu <tJ V U . '" 'l:I E: ~ ~ ....) c:p I ..l . ...10 . ... o (j) "'-I "" .. E: c ::l E: .....~ ---.~ OF""'ct: ...... volatile matter and moisture... . C ::t .~ IU E: 'q. 't' l' E C:R~3. In one he plotted the' constituents fixed carbon.::. . ~ ... ~ I~ ..·s l:: -Q -lC ...... . ~ ~C~ ~~ . III 4:: t. He plotted the percentages of these on triaxial co-ordinates and found that the coals separated on the graphs into some natural groups.. .. Ralston (1915) calculated a large number of ultimate analysis to the 'pure coal' basis so that C.."'- t"f N ... . 1.. £: 10 .....000 co eo C I I I I <:) I / Ie! <0 C .. N~ I1J I::: ~ . R~ 0 G:> -.t:. " '!l c co ~ o tQ 00 ~ I I 10 / I It) I I '1~ "II(OJ ~ ~ ~ <:) \ \. \." .... ~ Ii> 10 0) .~ -e Q) "'6 ~ "'l ...~ . '" 5 6 ~'9-~ ~~---.~ " . 0 16.I I I I II I I I~ /~ ..~/ ~ / 'to> I \J It) 0 / v .!:' -t:... III 'Io... 'i-> t... / 8... J..:§ __ "3·...000 . § q.:J.... ~~ ~ ~ 0 4. C... Fisher (1927) used two sets of trilinear co-ordinates...... Oampbell.. ' . 3 4 ~"'\ f') .
-U. 10 per cent ash (or 11 per cent mineral matter) which procedure was found to be more satisfactory than calculation to the hypothetical 'pure coal' basis.. burns with a short yellow flame at first and then with a blue flame. Grade.000 to 11. Peat.T. 11. over 6.-Brown.. some of the best steam coals and the best gas and by-product coals. Inferior to the above.500 B.U. 4'6% fixed carbon. Fuel ratio 2·5 to 5. Third .000 to 15. .-Hard. woody or composed of finely divided plant tissues. difficult to ignite but burns without smoke.000 cal.U.T. Up to 15% ash. in his investigation of coals of the Province of Alberta in Canada. .000 B. this class includes cannels.S.T. 12. Bituminous..300 cal. R.-Contains approximately 85% moisture. over 6. 10·4% volatile matter. High Volatile.000 B.000 cal. burns with a blue flame. TABLE 7. Up to 16% ash. . . . 7. 555 which were also on the ash-free. . or amorphous and representing the first stage in the development of cannel. 6. .. Contains 25 to 45 % moisture.000 to 7.S. E.M. S.. Semi-anthracite.-Harder than bituminous.500 cal. . 6.T.800 cal.000 to 15. over 6. Anthracite. There is always some difference between the ash and the total mineral matter which must also be taken into account. Campbell has described the classification adopted by the U. Up to 13% ash. under 9% moisture. KlUSRNA:N: CLASSI:FICATION OF COAL. Lignite. fuel ratio 5 to 10.000 cal. Semi-bituminous. Geological Survey in a paper presented before the International Bituminous Coal Conference at Pittsburgh in 1926. Selected First Second Low Volatile..-Slacks little on exposure. Up to 13% ash. over 7.U. . 12 to 25% moisture. The approximate limits of the classes were shown in his diagrams by lines. Up to 18% ash. TABLE 6.T.290 B. under 6% moisture. Classification. moist coal. M. found that moisture must be taken into account for a satisfactory classification. under over 10% moisture. Up to 11% ash. Fuel ratio over 10. 1. over 6. does not soil the hands. usually friable and slacks easily.U.400 B. Fuel ratio below 2'5.U. Stansfield (1925).. Sub-bituminous. The 'details of this are shown in the following statement (Table 6) as well as in figure 1.G.-Nearly smokeless. slacks on exposure. on drying shrinks and breaks up in an irregular manner. The analyses were recast to a uniform.S.-Black in colour.
..13. 1.. . Dry F. classify under Low volatile bituminous. High volatile A . less than 69%.U. Lignite .. Group. Bituminous 3.T. Sub-bituminous and Lignite. IV.U.T. Moist B. ... If the fixed carbon is 1688 than 69 . KRISHNAN: CLASSIFICATION OF COAL... 1 I If agglutinating.. Coals having 69 per cent or more fixed carbon on the dry mineral are to be olassified according to regardless of B.C.U. which has been found to be a very good approximation to the truth. The latest scheme evolved in America is that tentatively adopted by the American Standards Association (A.T. Sub-bituminous 2. Meta-anthracite .50011... Either agglutinating or non-weathering..).-ClasBificatinn of coal.ding Board (Table 7) for coal intended for export.ll. 92% or more up to 98%. Consolidated.5002• Moist B. matter free basis In the above classification the mineral matter is taken as 1·1 times the ash. .OOO13. This recognises four broad classes: Anthracite. Dry F..OOO13. High volatile B 5. Low volatile 2.. A simple classification is used by the Indian Coa..C.U.U. Bituminous. moist B. Physical property. Brown coal. This scheme is shown in Table 8.U.M. . This has been in use for over a dozen years. ..C.300.0002• Moist B. Semi-anthracite 1. less less III. Coals having calorific value of 14. Unconsolidated. more.T. High volatile C 1..000 or more.0002• Moist B. 2. Anthracite .C. Normal anthracite 3.T.j.S. 69 to 77% Dry F. MoistB.00014.. 4.C. by rank (A.000 or over on the moist mineral matter free basis and those having 69 per cent or more of fixed carbon on the dry basis are classified according to fixed carbon. . S.U: F.M.T.300.C.U.T.U. on mineral matter free basis. 86 to 92% Non-agglutinating 1...ll.T. than 8.. Both weathering and non-agglutinating. Lignite .T. Medium volatile Dry F. 8.3009.0002• Moist B. or F'ixed Carbon B. 77 to 86% Dry F.. Sub-bituminous 1. . 2. TABLE 8. 1.U. Sub-bituminous A B C " . Dry F.. Moist B. than 8.T.e. II.. 9. 14.S. 98% or Class.T...556 M.T.0002• . Sub-bituminous 3. .l Gra.
T. proposals. by the unfortunate step of introducing in different parts of the same classification a change from the dry to the moist mineral free basis. X 100- (1'~C: +O'IS) For the weathering test. X 100-(M:~~A+0'IS) Moist mineral matter free basis = F.S. the United States Bureau of Mines test as described in the Report of Investigations No.T. whether in the raw coal as it comes out of the mine or in air-dried coal. KRISHNAN: CLASSIFICATION OF COAL. The agglutinating test adopted is 500 grams of coal at a ratio of 15 parts of sand to 1 part of coal by the United States Bureau of Mines method. non-anthracitic coals. In some semi-anthracites it happens that they are agglutinating. classification because it does not take into account the petrographical constituents. The methods of determining moisture are now far from satisfactory. Unfortunately. Seyler's classification requires elaborate calculations on the data of ultimate analysis especially if the coal contains appreciable quantities of' dull coal' and is therefore highly artificial. in which case they will be put under the low volatile bituminous group. Here he examines the proposition that coals of the same elementary composition are identical in all properties. petrological composition and properties which we have discussed in the paper'. The A. moisture may be absorbed from the 17 .T. volatile matter.C. and adds-"In addition. He also finds that the composition of bright coal conforms to the rank. as is well known.T. Seyler has very recently published a further elaborate discussion of classification on his pure coal basis and petrological constituents. Hence it would seem that moisture in coal as mined (or under standard conditions of storage and drying) should be determined and taken into account for the purpose of classification. moisture from seepage should be carefully avoided and the coal should be immediately sealed air-tight and analysed as soon as possible.M.M. It will be noted that in Parr's scheme volatile matter and calorific value are used while in Seyler's the 'pure coal' is used. destroy all the simple correlations between elementary composition.· M. Both these systems ignore t1ie existence of moisture as an integral part of the coal.M. the A. 3055 (1930) is applied. Seyler however condemns the A. If the coal is stored. Emphasis is laid on coal petrography. Examining the relation between volatile matter and hydrogen. 557 per cent on the dry basis. he proposes a law similar to Dulong's law (V = aH-bC+K). In sampling. This is found to be applicable only to bright. Committee recommended the following:Dry mineral matter free basis = F.S. The importance of moisture as an essential ingredient of the coal substance is now well recognised and X-ray study shows that at least in the lower rank coals it plays much the same role as volatile matter.U. S.S. the classification is made on the moist B.C. In nonweathering coals the weathering index should not exceed 5%.
which is simply the difference between 100 and the sum of volatiles and moisture in mineral matter free coal) fails. Min. Ohem.Vol. Soc. Illinois Eng. 639. in addition. P. as already mentioned. Jour.. Fisher. Expt. C. (1927). the analytical procedure and the subsequent reduction of the results to a uniform basis should be standardised. the calorific value provides the best criterion for differentiation. 225 (1907). Min68. Frazer. I. F. Ralston. Such a procedure is necessary because the collection of representative samples of high purity for' pure coal' determination is generally difficult. Jour. there is the difficulty about moisture which these authors have completely ignored. according to conditions.-Graphic studies in the ultimate analysis of coal. 173.-Classification of N. Tron«. U. Conf.. No. Ind. S. p. 2. pp. Fieldner. The volatile matter shows only a small variation over a wide range and there is also much overlap. It is not so valuable in the case of the lower ranks. Intemat. S. Econ. (1909). Amer. F. Hence the question of the evaluation of this component should be studied intensively to arrive at a satisfactory method for the determination of that part of it which is inherent in the coal. of great importance for commercial purposes and can be readily determined. Sta. Stansfield has shown that this factor varies between 1'05 and 1·20 for different Alberta coals in Canada and has advocated the use of the factor 1·1 as a satisfactory one.S. Vol.. 646. (1909). 5. 180. D. Tech. Geol.. not only for one field but also over a whole country or even universally. p. Ohem. p. 63-72. O. 35.I'Mt.• 1904. coal ot Pittsburgh. Geol. The calorific value is. London. atmosphere or given up. comparison between different fields would be simplified. (1928). Bur. 6.-Composition of coals.S. Bitum: Ooal at PittBburgh. 4. 17B . Parr. 653. (1906).T. i. 919. Eng. J.-Coal and its scientific uses (Chapter V). p. M. 1 2 3 4 6 'S 7 8 Bone. R. Eng..558 M. p. If a standard method of adjustment is agreed upon for reduction to pure coal. 1926. 430-451. 4.pp. 28. p.7. The ultimate analysis of coal is particularly useful in studying the behaviour of coal of higher than bituminous rank. S. Univ. W.-The Classificationof Coal. 1926.Oonf. (1877).S. W. the sum of volatile matter and moisture (and alternatively fixed carbon.. pp. Jour. KIUSlINAN: CLASSIFIOATlON OF COAL. and the same factor has also been used by Tideswell and Wheeler and recently by the A.e.-The classification of coal. Similarly. Amer.-Report on the operation of coal testing plant of the U. 156. Bitum. 14. p. pp. Bull.M. For coals of bituminous and lower ranks. C. A. for. Paper 93. and has been used effectively by such authorities as Seyler and Ralston. 1425. 1918.G. 632--66l. Intemat. I. For a classification to be of wide application. Campbell. (1922). American coals. Grout. A. REFERENOES.-Notes regarding coalification process. In the evaluation of mineral matter Parr has used the factor 1·08 to multiply the ash percentage.
. A. Trans.. pp. Eng. Inet.-Chemical classification of coal. 17.S. pp. Op. W. KRISHNAN: OLASSIFICATIoN OF OOAL• 559 • Selvig. 15. E.79. 10 Seyler. R. pp. 200-214. A. according to fixed carbon and B.-A chemical survey of Alberta coals. C. 177. Ode. (1925).U. V..M. ... H. (1938). Trans. (1928).. 200. A.T. 28. 41. 12 Tideswell. and Wheeler. (1934). Inet.. 76. Trans. F. Min. cit. and Fieldner. Eng. 11 Stansfield. Amer. Amer. Min. Petrology and classification of coal. Met. 108. pp. 188197. Can. Fuel in Science and Practice 3. Min. W.-Classification of the coals of the U.-Pure coal as a basis for classification. 235. (1924). V. Inst. S. C.
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