NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

Economic Benefits from Burnout of Abandoned Coal Mine Fires.

Chaiken RF
Proc 9th Annu Underground Coal Gasificaton Symp Morgantown West Virginia, Doc/METC 1983 Dec; :10 pages
Burnout control of abandoned coal mine fires was investigated by the Bureau of Mines to determine the feasibility of completely burning out the coal in situ while maintaining control of the heat and fumes produced. The control process would also enable the thermal energy developed underground to be brought to the surface as high- temperature flue gas suitable for powering an on-site, waste heat, boiler-steam turbine electrical generation plant. Since accelerated coal burning will lead to earlier self-extinguishment of the mine fire after the fuel is totally consumed, burnout control offers a means for eliminating a serious environmental problem while at the same time converting a coal waste to a coal resource. Unlike most conventional methods of extinguishing abandoned coal mine fires (such as excavation and quenching), burnout control through the production and sale of electricity can lead to net revenues that would make the process economically viable. This paper documents some of the cost factors involved in determining the net revenues from burnout control. Net cash flow analyses indicate the possibility of sufficient rates of return from relatively low capital investment to attract the interest of private investors.
Publication Date
Document Type
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
OP 95-84
NIOSH Division
Source Name
Proc. 9th Annu. Underground Coal Gasificaton Symp., Morgantown, West Virginia, Doc/Metc, Dec.1983, pp.523-532
Page last reviewed: November 12, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division