Mining Publication: Methane Emissions from Gassy Coals in Storage Silos
The methane gas emitted from coal samples collected from the conveyor belts dumping into silos was measured by the Bureau of Mines. Approximately 50 pct of the total gas desorbed into a sealed can within 1 week was released during the first 24 hours. No simple correlation between the gassiness of the coal stored and the methane concentration in the silo open space above the coal was found. This was probably because the gassier coals were stored in open-top silos, which were better ventilated. Although the methane concentration in the open space above the coal pile was less than 1 pct for all 34 silos investigated, a methane measurement in the coal pile showed that high methane concentrations can exist. The methane released in the pile appears to accumulate and not liberate freely into the open space above the coal pile. Probably this gas is released during reclaiming operations, but further research is required to substantiate this claim.