Properties and Structure of Metallurgical Coke...

Properties and Structure of Metallurgical Coke Metallurgical coke is a porous, fissured, silver-black solid and is an important part of the ironmaking process since it provides the carbon (C) and heat required to chemically reduce iron burden in the blast furnace (BF) to produce hot metal (HM). It is a porous C material with high strength produced by carbonization of coals of specific rank or of coal blends at temperatures around 1100 deg C in coke ovens. It is composed of both the organic and inorganic matter. C is the major component of the organic part. Small amounts of sulphur (S), nitrogen (N2), hydrogen (H2) and oxygen (O2) also occur in the organic part. The inorganic matter in coke is called coke ash (mineral matter) and is typically around 12 % on dry basis. Both the organic and inorganic components influence coke reactivity. Thus, coke characterization is an important aspect to understand the quality of coke formed. The basic understanding of coke quality is an important task as it determines the high temperature and gasification behaviours of coke in the blast furnace (BF). As the coke moves towards the lower zones of BF, it degrades and generates fines, which affects the bed permeability and the process efficiency. Hence, superior coke quality is critical for a stable and efficient BF operation. Coke quality is influenced by many factors such as the rank, the maceral composition (leading to isotropic or anisotropic coke structures), the ash composition and the fluidity of the starting coals, the carbonization conditions including peak temperature, heating rate, particle size, pressure and bulk density as well as heat treatment conditions. The important properties of coke, including mechanical strength and reactivity, are governed by the arrangement of the constituent C atoms. The principal features...