A thermodynamic study of an 88 MW cogeneration plant located in the United States is presented. The plant is singled out for consideration since the feedstock consists of waste anthracite culm banks. The culm banks remain on the ground surface after decades of active coal mining in the region. Before combustion, usable coal within the culm is separated from the indigenous rock and conveyed to circulating fluidized bed (CFB) boilers. The indigenous rock and ashes from combustion are used as fill in adjacent land previously scared by strip mining. Trees and grass are planted in these areas as part of a land reclamation program. The research reported here includes the results of thermodynamic analyses of the cogeneration plant cycle and processes. Analyses based on the First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics are first presented to acquaint the reader with the plant’s components and operation. Data used in the calculations are based on actual operating data obtained at the cogeneration plant during a mass and energy balance study conducted in the late 1990’s. The data are average values and indicative of the plant’s base load operating state. Using emission and other relevant environmental data from the plant, an externalities study is outlined that estimates the plant’s effect on the local population.

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