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Energies 2017, 10(8), 1234; https://doi.org/10.3390/en10081234

Coupled Effects of Moisture Content and Inherent Clay Minerals on the Cohesive Strength of Remodelled Coal

1,2,†
,
1,* , 3,†
,
4
and
1
1
Key Laboratory of Deep Coal Resource Mining (CUMT), Ministry of Education of China, School of Mines, China University of Mining & Technology, Xuzhou 221116, China
2
Department of Energy and Mineral Engineering, EMS Energy Institute, and G3 Center, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802, USA
3
School of Resources & Safety Engineering, Central South University, Changsha 410083, China
4
Changping Coal Mine, Jincheng Anthracite Mining Group, Jincheng 048000, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 July 2017 / Revised: 14 August 2017 / Accepted: 17 August 2017 / Published: 20 August 2017
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Abstract

Injecting water into a coal seam to enhance the cohesive strength of coal and thus minimize and reduce the coal wall spalling risk must be considered in underground coal mining systems. In general, coal with low cohesive strength contains clay minerals which may affect the stability of coal by interacting with water. Therefore, the coupled effects of moisture content and inherent clay minerals on the physical properties (i.e., cohesive strength and internal friction angle) of coal samples should be addressed. In this paper, direct shear tests were conducted by remodelling the Yiluo coal with various moisture contents ranging from 6.6% to 20.7%. According to Mohr–Coulomb failure criterion, cohesive strength and internal friction angle of coal were obtained. Afterwards, effects of moisture content and clay minerals (i.e., Kaolinite, Smectite and Illite) on the cohesive strength of coal were analysed using X-ray diffraction (XRD) method. The results show that cohesive strength increases when the moisture content rises from 6.6% to 17.6%, after which it decreases with increasing moisture content. This trend can be well illustrated by the relationship between typical water retention curve (WRC) and suction stress of soil. Therefore, a moisture content of 17.6% would be an optimal value to enhance the stability of the Yiluo coal seam. View Full-Text
Keywords: clay minerals; cohesive strength; direct shear test; internal friction angle; water retention curve (WRC) clay minerals; cohesive strength; direct shear test; internal friction angle; water retention curve (WRC)
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Zhang, H.; Wan, Z.; Ma, D.; Zhang, B.; Zhou, P. Coupled Effects of Moisture Content and Inherent Clay Minerals on the Cohesive Strength of Remodelled Coal. Energies 2017, 10, 1234.

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