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ARTICLE
Year : 2014  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 127-134

Coal as an Energy Source for Mitigating Energy Crisis in Pakistan


1 Department of Chemical, Polymer and Composite Material Engineering, Center for Energy Research and Development, Lahore, KSK Campus, Pakistan; Department of Chemical Engineering, Priority Research Center for Energy, The University of Newcastle, New South Wales, 2308 Australia
2 Department of Polymer and Process Engineering, University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore, KSK Campus, Pakistan
3 Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore, KSK Campus, Pakistan

Correspondence Address:
Muhammad Imran Rashid
Department of Chemical, Polymer and Composite Material Engineering, Center for Energy Research and Development, Lahore, KSK Campus, Pakistan; Department of Chemical Engineering, Priority Research Center for Energy, The University of Newcastle, New South Wales, 2308 Australia

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0976-8580.141210

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Pakistan is producing just 0.1% of its electricity from its coal resources. Electricity supply and demand gap in Pakistan is projected to increase rapidly till 2020. Pakistan has major reserves of lignite coal and similar coal has been used for electricity production in Greece, Turkey, Poland, and Germany. Natural gas and oil resources are also becoming meager in Pakistan, which stresses the use of coal gasification techniques for efficient energy generation. Underground coal gasification and fluidized bed combustion are appropriate choices for Pakistani low-grade Thar coal. Relatively high grade Makerwal and Lakhara coals can be gasified by integrated gasification combined cycle technology. Pakistan's abundant indigenous coal reserves can be used to produce fertilizer or different viable gaseous mixtures (producer gas, town gas, water gas, and synthetic natural gas). Syngas produced from coal can be used as an alternate of natural gas to run Pakistan fertilizer plants. Use of coal will also result in production of various chemicals for fertilizer (ammonia), textile (dyes, BTX, phenol, ethylene, and acetic acid) and transport (methanol, diesel, gasoline, liquefied petroleum gas) sectors. Retrofitting of existing oil fired plants, installation of new gasification plants and improving the efficiency of existing coal based power plants has become inevitable for future survival of Pakistan's economy.


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