Coal-fired power plants produce flue gas consisting mainly of nitrogen (around 79%), followed by CO2 (around 10 - 15%), and small amounts of other gases such as H2, NOx and SO2. One of the promising methods for reducing CO2 emission is CO2 sequestration into deep, unminable coal seams. At present, flue gases exhausted from coal-fired plant must be separated to extract pure CO2 before injecting it into coal seams.

In order to enhance the efficiency of carbon capture and storage (CCS) from a coal-fired power plant, oxy-fuel combustion technology has been employed. This technology uses pure oxygen to burn the coal, and consequently CO2 concentration in the flue gas is theoretically increased up to 95%.

This study aims to simulate the CH4 replacement mechanism in coal by using pure CO2 and a synthesized flue gas (99% CO2 and 1% SO2) that is similar to the emission gas from the coal-fired power plants. A measurement procedure for gas adsorption is employed which, after establishing methane adsorption equilibrium of the coal samples, injects pure CO2 or the synthesized flue gas into an adsorption cell in order to investigate CH4 replacement properties. Coal samples used for the present experiments were taken from the coal seams of Vietnam, Japan, Australia, China and Indonesia. The samples were crushed to particle sizes ranging from 250 µm to 5 mm. The concentration of gases was taken from the adsorption cell and analyzed by using a gas chromatograph. Adsorption isotherms of CH4, CO2 and SO2 were measured by using the volumetric method apparatus.

This paper discusses the characteristics of methane replacement by using pure CO2, the synthesized flue gas and the effect of SO2 on adsorption properties of coal.


Global warming and climate change due to the greenhouse effect continue to be a serious problem. In particular, CO2 emission into the atmosphere from coal-fired power plants needs to be reduced. One of the most promising methods of reducing CO2 emissions is CO2 sequestration in deep, unminable coal seams. The CO2 adsorption capacities of coals were investigated by Huy et al.(1). The results showed that CO2 adsorption was double that of CH4.

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