A computational fluid dynamics (CFD) study was conducted to model effects of coal properties on the potential for spontaneous heating in longwall gob (mined-out) areas. A two longwall panel district using a bleeder ventilation system was simulated. The permeability and porosity profiles for the longwall gob were generated from a geotechnical model and were used as inputs for the three-dimensional CFD modeling. The spontaneous heating is modeled as the low-temperature oxidation of coal in the gob using kinetic data obtained from previous laboratory-scale spontaneous combustion studies. Heat generated from coal oxidation is dissipated by convection and conduction, while oxygen and oxidation products are transported by convection and diffusion. Unsteady state simulations were conducted for three different US coals and simulation results were compared with some available test results. The effects of coal surface area and heat of reaction on the spontaneous heating process were also examined.
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