Can we make steel without coal?
Now, nearly all new steel globally is produced using iron oxide and coking coal. Coking coal is usually bituminous-rank coal with special qualities that are needed in the blast furnace. While an increasing amount of steel is being recycled, there is currently no technology to make steel at scale without using coal.
Is coal needed to make steel?
Coal and coke
Coking coal is a key raw material in steel production. As iron occurs only as iron oxides in the earth’s crust, the ores must be converted, or ‘reduced’, using carbon. The primary source of this carbon is coking coal.
Why is coke used instead of coal?
The single most important factor is strength ( mechanical compressive ); coal is heated to make coke, the resulting coke is stronger than the original coal. Also, coke helps to make the charge of iron oxides and limestone more porous to permit gas flow up and droplets of liquid iron and slag down.
Is coke obtained from coal?
Coke is produced by heating coal at high temperatures, for long periods of time. This heating is called “thermal distillation” or “pyrolysis.” In order to produce coke that will be used in blast furnaces, coal is usually thermally distilled for 15 to 18 hours, but the process can take up to 36 hours.
What is coke used for in steel?
What is coke? Coke is used as a fuel and a reducing agent in melting iron ore. It is produced by baking coal until it becomes carbon by burning off impurities without burning up the coal itself. When coke is consumed it generates intense heat but little smoke, making it ideal for smelting iron and steel.
How is coal used for steel production?
Coal therefore plays three roles in the production of steel: a reducing agent, to turn the pig iron to coke; a source of energy to drive the process by breaking apart molecular bonds; and a source of carbon for the final product (steel is an alloy of carbon and iron).
What is the difference between coal and coke?
Coal is a lustrous, black fossil fuel that includes impurities, generates smoke, and generates less heat than coke when burned. Coke is a dingy, black coal waste that burns hotter and cleaner. … Coke is a fuel made from mineral coal that has been calcined or dry distilled.