Part 5: Preparation Plant Flowsheets

Muter, Richard B.
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 12
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1991
In determining the layout or combination of unit operations to be utilized in a modem preparation plant, several factors must be taken into account. Among these are the washability data, size consist data, the particular market or markets for the coal, the mining method used, the degree to which the coal must be prepared, expected fluctuations in raw coal and markets, and the overall economics of the process. In addition, there are the health and safety aspects of coal utilization and preparation. Chapter 1 of this book discusses the characteristics of coal and coal markets, while Chapter 2 deals with the design of preparation plants. Once the unit operations for a particular plant have been decided upon, these arrangement may be depicted by using a flowsheet. A coal preparation plant flowsheet is a two-dimensional graphical representation of the sequence of operations, the arrangement of machinery, and the flow of materials for a particular coal cleaning operation. The flowsheet is usually qualitative in nature, becoming more quantitative as material balances, water balances, numbers and sizes of various pieces of equipment, etc. are added. The usual convention in preparing a flowsheet is to show the feed flowing from left to right, starting at the top left and working down as in an all-gravity process. Various symbols are used for each unit operation as depicted on a flowsheet, and Fig. 14-37 is a compilation of the commonly accepted international standard symbols for each unit operation. Fig. 14-38 through Fig. 14-40 are flowsheets of various coal cleaning processes as published in the January 1976 issue of Coal Age. Each process has its own unique features which, among others, depend upon the coal being cleaned, the coal market, and the mining operation. Fig. 14-38, for example, is a flow diagram for a jig plant preparing steam coal from two strip mines located a few miles apart. In addition to the jig washer, cyclones are used to treat the finer size coal. Fig. 14-39 is a flowsheet of a heavy media plant using a heavy media washer for + %-in. (+6.3-mm) coal, froth flotation for -28 Tyler mesh (-0.6 mm) material, and dewatering phase units (dwp) for Y, in. x 28 Tyler mesh (6.3 x 0.6-mm) cleaning of steam coal. In addition, thermal drying, centrifuge drying, and the use of vacuum disk filters and thickeners for dewatering are depicted. Fig. 14-40 is a flowsheet of a plant producing metallurgical coal. In addition to the heavy media and froth flotation circuits, a tabling circuit is also employed. These flowsheets are intended to give the reader an example of how the various unit operations for coal cleaning may be linked together. Figs. 14-41 and 14-42 illustrate the conversion of block diagrams into an IS0 prescribed set of symbols.
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