White Energy’s BCB technology upgrades sub-bituminous coals through a relatively simple thermal drying process followed by physical and chemical stabilisation through a novel binderless briquetting process. White Energy’s BCB technology has been shown to be cost and operationally superior to competing processes and enables the commercial exploitation of a large number of low quality, high moisture coal deposits. White Energy’s coal upgrading process provides coal fired power stations and other industrial applications with an opportunity to burn a cleaner and more efficient fuel.
White Energy’s Value Proposition
White Energy’s patented BCB coal upgrading process is a mechanical five-step process.
- Raw coal preparation
Run of mine raw coal from the BCB project mine will be delivered to the BCB plant site and deposited in a raw coal buffer storage. Coal will then undergo primary crushing followed by a secondary crushing.
- Hot gas generation for raw coal drying
Hot gas is required to dry the raw coal. Hot gas will be generated in a furnace fired on a combination of dried coal dust from the briquetting machines and dried coal from the cyclone coal surge bin. Hot gas will be exhausted from the furnace directly into the drying column.
- Raw coal drying
The raw coal is “flash dried” in a drying column where water in the coal is essentially evaporated off. A pneumatic coal delivery system has been designed for transporting the coal to the dryer and injecting it into the dryer column where it will come into direct contact with hot gas from the furnace.
- Briquetting of dry coal
This briquetting process involves the transportation of dry coal product downstream of the dry coal buffer bin, feeding the product to the briquette presses, briquetting, cooling the briquette product and placing the product on a stockpile. Dried coal is taken from the buffer storage bin in the dryer section of the plant and fed on a continuous basis to a battery of double roll briquette presses
- Briquette storage and transport
Cooled briquettes will be placed on an open-air stockpile in preparation for transport. The briquettes will stabilize on the stockpile where they will reach their “stable” equilibrium moisture content. BCB is produced at just below equilibrium so there will only be a small shift in moisture when stockpiled.
The binderless briquettes are held together by the natural bonding mechanisms of coal and do not require the binders that are normally used to briquette coal.
The upgraded coal is intended to be used interchangeably with other high ranking coals and does not require any technical or engineering alterations at the power stations to allow for coal combustion. The inter-changeability of White Energy coal at the power station allows White Energy to take advantage of the significant price arbitrage opportunity created by the low cost of feedstock and the historical market price for bituminous coal.