Classification of Coal

Efforts to classify coals began over 175 years ago and were prompted by the need to establish some order to the confusion of different coals. Two types of classification systems arose. Some schemes are intended to aid scientific studies, and other systems are designed to assist coal producers and users. The scientific systems of classification are concerned with origin, composition, and fundamental properties of coals, while the commercial systems address trade and market issues, utilization, technological properties, and suitability for certain end uses. It is the latter classification systems that will be discussed here. Excellent discussions on scientific classifications are given elsewhere [1,10].

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