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Thermal desalination technologies and their applications to water management in Australian coal mines
2001 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The generation of saline wastewater and the emissions of fugitive methane gas are two of the major problems the coal mine industry in Australia is currently dealing with. These problems could possible be solved by using the methane gas to produce steam which in turn could operate thermal desalination processes to treat the salty mine water. This report reviews the water management situation at the Dartbrook Coal mine located in the Hunter Valley in New South Wales. The mine was chosen because of the extensive water management requirements that has been put on all industries in the valley via the Hunter River Salinity Trading Scheme (HRSTS). Furthermore, this report describes the three major processes used in the thermal desalination industry: multiple effect distillation (MED), multi- stage flash (MSF) and vapour compression (VC), and determines which factors should be considered when determining whether or not to implement thermal desalination at a mine. Finally, it is calculated if enough fugitive methane gas is available at the Dartbrook Coal mine to treat the required amount of wastewater using thermal desalination. The amount of wastewater that has to be treated to meet the demands at the Dartbrook Coal mine is 263 ML/day (mega litre per day). Using the lowest flow of pre- and post drainage gas at the mine it was calculated that all of the thermal processes, except MED and MSF-OT, are capable of treating the required amount of mine water. Water management is of great importance to the coal mines and the use of waste methane gas to treat the wastewater would provide a solution not only for the mitigation of gas emissions but also for long term sustainability of coal mining operations. The recycling of mine water would reduce the amount of fresh water that has to be purchased from local councils and decrease the need to provide evaporation dams for water disposal.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Technology, Thermal desalination, Mine water management, Fugitive methane, Multistage Flash, Multiple Effect Distillation, Vapour, Compression
Keyword [sv]
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-49915ISRN: LTU-EX--01/311--SELocal ID: 7386ad26-9d1c-447f-a5f5-2420cc69bc9bOAI: diva2:1023263
Subject / course
Student thesis, at least 30 credits
Educational program
Environmental Engineering, master's level
Validerat; 20101217 (root)Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-10-04Bibliographically approved

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