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Top 5 Ideas to consider when building a new Coal Preparation Plant

Posted by Raymond Perr, PE

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Aug 29, 2014 2:46:00 PM

By:  Raymond Perr

Coal Preparation Plants are rated for the number of raw tons the plant can handle in an hour.  We typically hear people talking about either a 1,000 or 1,500 ton-per-hour plant.


Often calculations are performed to determine required preparation plant capacity to match the average production of the coal mine. A flow sheet is developed based on the “washabilty” of the coal. These types of calculations take into account the availability of the planned hours of operation.  Many other items need to be considered in this process to assure the plant will always operate at the necessary capacity. 

Here are my Top 5 considerations that you will want to prioritize:

1)   Keep an eye open to size and yield variability and its impact on capacity and quality. A balanced design accommodates both size consist and yield variations.  Mining conditions can change.
2)   Don’t skimp on water flow, as it is the engine that drives capacity.
3)   Don’t cut corners on Hp for conveying and pumping. It will often cost 150% more to add 20% later.
4)   A bottleneck in one circuit will limit capacity in all circuits. It is better to be 10% over design than 5% under.
5)  Be sure to provide access to equipment for maintenance and replacement. Inaccessible equipment will not be maintained, and equipment lacking in maintenance usually operates inefficiently

Hopefully these five ideas will help you from being disappointed with your new coal plant that doesn’t meet capacity and performance expectations.

Remember there is no substitute to hiring an experienced coal preparation plant process engineer and design team who are experienced in working at coal mining facilities and designing coal preparation plants.   In addition to understanding the process, these engineers must have an understanding of the individual items of equipment in the plant as well as how they function as a system and how the system operates as part of the coal mine.

Where can you find this type of engineering talent with this type of experience?  Industrial Resources’ process engineering group routinely performs this type of design and analysis for the coal industry and has been doing it for more than 60 years. They understand what it takes to assure that a preparation plant rate at 1,500 tons-per-hour will perform at the capacity without excuses - period.  To contact us, visit our site!

Learn More About Coal Preparation Plant Construction


Raymond Perr, PE

Written by Raymond Perr, PE

Raymond Perr P. E. Director of Business Development Industrial Resources, Inc P.O. Box 514 Carnegie, PA. 15106 Office - 412-279-8834 Cell - 304-534-1820

About Industrial Resources:

Industrial Resources has over 200 combined years of service in the mineral industry. Our greatest service is the ability to produce in situations where others were unable to. We are proud to design and build projects on schedule and within the customers' budget.

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