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Alite 11-15-2009 12:11 PM

Coal to WAX
Rather than burning Coal, Oil or Gas we should value add it. Turning coal to liquid for fuel is based on the oil price of approximately $450 per tonne. Turning coal to wax could produce a much higher sale price at $700 per tonne or higher ($2000) if it is refined further. Wax is used in particle board and plasterboard and so has large consumption of wax. H&R group would take every kg of suitable wax. The wax is used as a hydrophobe and so is not burned an does not impact on CO2 emissions. Coal to liquid fuel is an option but maybe coal to wax is better.

Sparty 11-16-2009 01:56 AM

Tell us about Coal to Wax
I'm completely ignorant on the conversion/extraction of coal to wax.

Please educate me (well I guess most of us).

Sparty 11-17-2009 11:17 PM

Received via email from Alite: Re Coal to Wax
Conversion of Coal to Wax: this has been happening for decades with the production of Montan Wax. In essence the coal is soaked in a solvent like Toluene and the wax is extracted. It is a pretty basic process with low conversion rates but the high value of montan wax (>US$3000 per tonne) has made it worthwhile. For this process to work the coal deposit has to be high in the right type of Lignite… which is rare. I’m certain that new technologies could be brought to bear on the conversion of coal to wax that could greatly benefit the Australian economy (H&R export to all of Asia). A company called Ignite is using super-critical water (whatever that is) to convert southern Victorian brown coal to liquid. I'm thinking this type of technology, or any other new technology, could be used to make wax.

Their web site is:

Qualifier: Please be aware that I am an employee of H&R ANZ and so have a vested interest in the above comments.

Sparty 11-17-2009 11:36 PM

Tell us about Montan Wax
I just Googled Montan Wax...

Rohan I think we need more info as to why this is such a huge market.

As you know just one UCG-GTL plant can produce around 20,000 BOE per day. LNC has a couple of billion tons of suitable coal that can be converted via UCG-GTL to around 3 billion BOE. LNC recently estimated that they can produce 20,000 BOE per day for 250 years.

CTP has around 1.5 trillion tons of UCG suitable coal with 90m thick seams at Perdika meaning that they can produce somewhere around a few trillion BOE over the next few centuries.

(The cost of producing a BOE via UCG-GTL is estimated between AUD$28 - 35.)

The argument I have been putting forward is that Australia in reality is the next OIL Saudi as well as the world's Uranium honeypot and that we can power our own economy using GAS and Hot Rock Energy.

What concerns me is that our Govt. lacks the knowledge to pick winners but that is what it is doing. Witness Anna Bligh all but banning UCG in favor of CSM and our Federal Govt not even recognizing the existence of UCG-GTL.

Sparty 11-18-2009 02:42 AM

By email response from Alite
Your point is well made.

I would guestimate that Asian consumption of wax in Plasterboard, MDF and Particleboard would only be around 3000 barrels per day. This is not on the same scale as a UCG-GTL plant that can produce around 20,000 BOE per day. However I could see a wax plant being a very handy adjunct to a Coal to Oil plant. It may even be that 3000 barrels of wax would be more profitable than 20,000 barrels of oil. There certainly would be no concerns with carbon emissions or costs as wax is used a hydrophobe and so is not burned.

Australia could be the next WAX Saudi as well as the next OIL Saudi. Food for thought for the prospective Coal to Oil companies out there.

Sparty 03-13-2010 02:52 AM

First phase of Sasol wax expansion on line
First phase of Sasol wax expansion on line

12 Mar 2010 - I-Net Bridge -
Sasol says it expects the first phase of its R8.4bn Wax Expansion Project to come into operation in 2012.
Sasol, the world's largest fuel from coal producer, on Thursday said it expected the first phase of its R8.4 billion Wax Expansion Project to come into operation in 2012.
Celebrating the breaking of ground for the project at its Sasolburg Sasol One Site, the group said when completed in 2014, the project would double Sasol Wax's production of hard wax in South Africa.
The Wax Expansion Project forms part of the larger Sasol Expansion Programme, which is estimated at a cost of R14 billion.
"This is a significant investment for the Sasolburg plant and demonstrates our commitment to our South African asset base," said chemical cluster group general manager Andre de Ruyter.
"It is in line with Sasol's strategy to leverage our advanced proprietary technology and is also aligned with our longer-term plans significantly to grow the chemicals businesses of the Sasol group," said De Ruyter.
The wax expansion project is estimated to create about 3 500 job opportunities during construction and between 70 and 100 permanent positions.
"We are following a holistic approach in the implementation of this project," said Stephan Schoeman, newly appointed managing director of Sasol Infrachem.
"The communities around our plant must also feel the benefit of the project.
"Sasol believes that local people should enjoy preferential employment opportunities, subject to the applicants meeting the requirements of the job," Schoeman said.
All unskilled and semi-skilled labour are to be sourced within a 30km radius around Metsimaholo in the greater Sasolburg area.
The commencement of the expansion programme in Sasolburg coincides with the 60th anniversary of the founding of Sasol Limited in 1950.
Sasolburg, the first Sasol plant, has seen significant changes since it was first built.
Although it is the plant where Sasol developed its proprietary Fischer-Tropsch technology, that converts coal to liquid synthetic fuel, the plant now uses only natural gas imported via pipeline from Mozambique as its feedstock.
In addition to producing chemicals like wax, Sasolburg is the site of the Sasol Technology business that manages Sasol's research and development, technology management and innovation.

Alite 03-14-2010 10:34 PM

Sasol and Shell
Shell is also spending a few hundred million on expansion of their Malaysian synthetic wax plant.

Sparty 06-04-2014 12:35 PM

Alite I wonder if you could elaborate on the use of UCG derived syngas and its role in wax?

Alite 06-06-2014 04:18 PM

It is all very simple. Gas from any carbon source is Ch4? Combining gas via the fisher tropsch process can stop at oil or at wax. As of 2014 the value of oil is low. As of 2014 the value of wax is high.

Alite 06-15-2014 02:34 PM

I'll elaborate. Hydrocarbons by definition contain Carbon and Hydrogen. Underground coal gassification (UGC) takes long chain hydrocarbons mixed with inorganics in the form of coal and uses heat to remove the carbon from the inorganic material. The carbon is brought to the surface as CO or CH4. Apparently H2 is also liberated (all combined = Syngas) though I do not pretend to understand how that is done.
Once the monomer gasses (CH4) are captured they can be modified via the Fisher Tropsh process into longer chain hydrocarbons. If the process is "stopped" at under straight chain C16 then you will get a liquid at room temp. If it continues past C17 then you get a wax. Branching can be introduced to provide different characteristics to the wax.
But Ohhh, there is so much more that one can do when combining carbon molecules; the carbon nanotube being my favorite for its extreme characteristics.
But back to the topic at hand, hydrocarbon wax has a multitude of uses which mostly revolve around its waterproofing nature.

Sparty, why do you ask the question?

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