Coal Mine Gas
Released methane gas from underground coal mines forms a highly explosive mixture when combined with air. This mine gas not only poses a major threat to miners, but it also is a large contributor to global warming when released into the atmosphere. However, the potential danger of coal mine gas (CMG) and methane emissions can be greatly reduced when they are harnessed properly for power and heat generation. Since the early 1990s, GE’s Jenbacher gas engines product line, with an installed capacity of more than 400 MW running on coal mine gas worldwide, has provided solutions for this special application. Moreover, our aeroderivative gas turbines product line has equipment options that bring high performance, fuel flexibility and increased power and energy to reduced-emissions cogeneration from CMG.
How It Works
Today, most large underground hard coal mines potentially contain coal mine methane, and abandoned mine methane and can be effectively used for power and heat generation with gas engines.
Sudden changes in the composition of CMG put greater demands on the engine, however. GE offers a special gas mixing and engine control system that enables efficient use of this gas to a minimum CH4-concentration of only 25%.
Additionally, GE’s Jenbacher gas engines and aeroderivative gas turbines are designed to operate on full load, despite low gas pressure, high humidity, dust load, and altitude.
The generated energy can be used in the coal mine to meet electricity requirements or fed into the public power grid. Thermal energy can be used for onsite heating or fed into a district heating system.
Features & Benefits
- Increased worker safety due to installation or refurnishing of gas suction system
- Mitigation of greenhouse gas (methane) and possible carbon monetization
- Revenues for power and heat production, when fed into the public grid
- Smooth operation despite fluctuations in gas pressure and methane content
- Overall efficiency of up to 90%, in combined heat and power, and up to 43.5% in power generation alone
- Zero to 100 percent load in 10 minutes
- Compact, modular units with low footprint requirement and dynamic weight
- Basic design and support for gas conditioning if required
- Low NOx yield from Dry Low Emissions (DLE) combustors