Numerical analysis of single and multiple particles of Belchatow lignite dried in superheated steam

Marcin Zakrzewski, Anna Sciazko, Yosuke Komatsu, Taro Akiyama, Akira Hashimoto, Shozo Kaneko, Shinji Kimijima, Janusz S. Szmyd, Yoshinori Kobayashi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Low production costs have contributed to the important role of lignite in the energy mixes of numerous countries worldwide. High moisture content, though, diminishes the applicability of lignite in power generation. Superheated steam drying is a prospective method of raising the calorific value of this fuel. This study describes the numerical model of superheated steam drying of lignite from the Belchatow mine in Poland in two aspects: single and multi-particle. The experimental investigation preceded the numerical analysis and provided the necessary data for the preparation and verification of the model. Spheres of 2.5 to 30 mm in diameter were exposed to the drying medium at the temperature range of 110 to 170 °C. The drying kinetics were described in the form of moisture content, drying rate and temperature profile curves against time. Basic coal properties, such as density or specific heat, as well as the mechanisms of heat and mass transfer in the particular stages of the process laid the foundations for the model construction. The model illustrated the drying behavior of a single particle in the entire range of steam temperature as well as the sample diameter. Furthermore, the numerical analyses of coal batches containing particles of various sizes were conducted to reflect the operating conditions of the dryer. They were followed by deliberation on the calorific value improvement achieved by drying, in terms of coal ingredients, power plant efficiency and dryer input composition. The initial period of drying was found crucial for upgrading the quality of coal. The accuracy of the model is capable of further improvement regarding the process parameters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2215-2230
Number of pages16
JournalHeat and Mass Transfer/Waerme- und Stoffuebertragung
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Aug 1


  • Belchatow lignite
  • Fuel upgrading
  • Low-rank coal
  • Multi-particle drying
  • Numerical simulation
  • Superheated steam drying

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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