There is a misunderstanding among the people that smokeless fuel means fuel that completely doesn’t generate any smoke. In normal condition, if carbon dioxide and oxygen are reacted, CO2 or smoke is exhaled. Actually smokeless fuel means fuel that leaves less ash and less impact on air pollution. There is various technology of processing coal to produce smokeless fuel, but all of those technologies are similar with final result of separating other elements like sulphur, ash and water.
As of our country, several technologies are tested to produce smokeless fuel as following international standard and some of the trials are being implemented as projects. Particularly, current situation of Ulaanbaatar air pollution acutely requires smokeless fuel. Government or decision makers should find and support the best solution satisfying international standard, environmental sound and economically effective modern technology when considering the health of dwellers, visual appearance of country and future development and dignity. There is no other choice than supporting.
However, Amore International LLC and Russian Sibtermo LLC announced that they supposed to produce jointly smokeless fuel with coking coal based in Power Plant-2 in April 2013, the activity is bogged down due to false technological solution.
Recently, Government of Mongolia and Modun Resources signed on the 5-year Memorandum of Understanding on coking coal. Their technology is “Binderless Coal Briquetting” initiated by White Energy Limited, Australia. This is the method of producing fuel with non-coking coal so that it is proven that smoking or polluting level is not lower even it has higher thermal characteristic. Binderless Coal Briquetting method is increasing thermal characteristics of bad moisture-high bad quality of coal drying and removing coal moisture. Experts consider that this method is not very optimal for reducing air pollution since other substances like sulphur and volatiles still remain in coal content.
There are several companies in Mongolia that having good technological solution producing and supplying smokeless fuel with coking coal. Which are “Sharyngol energo”, “NACO fuel”, “Bayalag Erdene tsom” etc. Unfortunately, these companies are not supplied yet the Ulaanbaatar city demand or consumption due to financial problem.
Nevertheless, this technology is very new in our country and being supported by Government, it is in focus of attention since 19th century. European countries like Germany, France and Belgium used to sieve the coal and wash the small coarse parts and then press by double compressor and produces high thermal fuel in power plants from mid-19th century. This method is called “Double Roll Press” and is being used commonly until World War II. For example, solely in France, over 7 million ton pressed fuel was being produced annually in 1945. After war Double Roll Press method is substituted by combustible oil and natural gas, even though this method is rolled out in China, India, Japan, Turkey and African countries which are major coal miners.
Nowadays, there are several smokeless fuel producing technology is being introduced. For instance GreenFields Coal, US Company introduced “DHS Water Free” technology, which doesn’t consume water, processes coal with high temperature heating and separate sulphur, light oil and water from coal content.
Smokeless fuel has different characteristics of carbonization and clarifications depending on fuel processing technological solution. Therefore, it is significant to select the best and essential technology suits with given condition by our decision makers.