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Author Topic: What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?  (Read 24112 times)

DoctorBeaver

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I remember when I was but a kit we had open hearth fires at home (the nearest we got to central heating was stuffing granny under the floorboards). Sometimes we would use coal, sometimes coke, and sometimes anthracite. There's an open fire where I live now and we get our coal in nice little bags from the local garage. But all they have is coal. No coke or anthracite.

So, what is the difference between them and can you still get coke & anthracite?

DoctorBeaver

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #1 on: 28/11/2008 16:31:36 »
I wonder if this would be better placed in Geology  ???

lightarrow

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #2 on: 28/11/2008 19:11:28 »
I remember when I was but a kit we had open hearth fires at home (the nearest we got to central heating was stuffing granny under the floorboards). Sometimes we would use coal, sometimes coke, and sometimes anthracite. There's an open fire where I live now and we get our coal in nice little bags from the local garage. But all they have is coal. No coke or anthracite.

So, what is the difference between them and can you still get coke & anthracite?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal

DoctorBeaver

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #3 on: 28/11/2008 19:40:20 »
I should have made it clearer that what I was asking is what is the difference between using the different types as fuel for an open fire.

RD

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #4 on: 28/11/2008 22:11:51 »
Coke and anthracite are smokeless fuels, some types of coal are not smokeless.

Spotted this photo of a Chinese coal delivery...



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal_in_China


I bet this coalman eats three shredded wheat for breakfast.  :)
« Last Edit: 28/11/2008 22:14:13 by RD »

DoctorBeaver

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #5 on: 28/11/2008 23:38:21 »
I wonder why they bother shaping it

RD

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #6 on: 29/11/2008 00:00:05 »
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Households in China's urban area have used crude coal for domestic use, but since mid-seventies we gradually shifted to honeycomb briquette which gives much higher heat efficiency, reducing consumption and cutting pollution.
http://www.hedon.info/BP19:CoalBriquetteTechnologyFromChina

"Honeycomb briquettes", so maybe this load of coal is not quite as heavy as it looks.


« Last Edit: 29/11/2008 00:03:37 by RD »

DoctorBeaver

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #7 on: 29/11/2008 00:37:32 »
Interesting

RD

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #8 on: 29/11/2008 03:01:16 »
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Households in China's urban area have used crude coal for domestic use, but since mid-seventies we gradually shifted to honeycomb briquette which gives much higher heat efficiency, reducing consumption and cutting pollution.
http://www.hedon.info/BP19:CoalBriquetteTechnologyFromChina

The Chinese were big on uniformity in the 1970's, e.g. the chairman Mao suit.
The briquettes would be a way of homogenising the coal so everyone got the same quantity and quality.

blakestyger

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #9 on: 29/11/2008 11:48:06 »
The briquettes are formed from coal dust as, I believe, was Anthracite and probably Phurnacite and Ancit.

I use something similar to get our open fire up to heat - then we burn logs for the rest of the evening.

The solid fuel we have is 'Homefire' - smokeless, hexagonal briquettes that come in 20kg bags and we burn about 2/month; there is no waste and little mineral ash.

[I liked the Chinese delivery - it must have been a Tuesday!]

As no-one has mentioned it yet, coke was a by-product of the old gas-works that towns had before natural methane replaced it.
The gas was produced by distilling coal and separating the products: gas, tar oil and coke (which still had a relatively high calorific value).
The tar oil would be further distilled in a fractionating tower to produce fine chemicals such as naphthalene, pyridine etc down to the heavier fractions and heavy oils like creosote. The final product would be coal tar that was used for road building.
As a chemistry student I was shown around one of these places in Scunthorpe - as I was working in sugar manufacture the differences were amazing.
« Last Edit: 29/11/2008 11:58:27 by blakestyger »

lyner

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #10 on: 03/12/2008 16:39:20 »
My dad used to collect coke, free of charge, from the Plymouth Gasworks. He had to take his own sacks, though.
This was in the early nineteen fifties.

Madidus_Scientia

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #11 on: 04/12/2008 07:36:33 »
I'm alien to all this, where I come from it would be daft to heat a house, and coke is something we drink along with a bit of rum. What do you mean by coke?

blakestyger

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #12 on: 04/12/2008 11:41:57 »
The gas was produced by distilling coal and separating the products: gas, tar oil and coke (which still had a relatively high calorific value).

Coke is hard and cinder-like, but is mostly carbon and mineral as it is essentially the coal without its gases and oils.

Australia is/or was known for its brown coal deposits that are open cast mined - what do you use that for?

Madidus_Scientia

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What is the difference between coal, coke & anthracite?
« Reply #13 on: 05/12/2008 07:26:34 »
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Brown coal is found in Victoria and South Australia, and is of lower quality due a higher ash and water content. As a result Victoria adopted German power station and briquette technology in the 1920s to utilize the brown coal reserves of the Latrobe Valley. Today there are three open cut brown coal mines in Victoria used for baseload power generation. Burning brown coal has 3 times the greenhouse gas emissions as natural gas.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal_mining_in_Australia

Basically we have a ****load of coal and what we don't use for our own power generation we export. Unfortunately we have no nuclear power stations which is a shame for the environment.

 

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