The design of coal combustion and conversion equipment must consider the behavior of coal ash in the temperature region of application. Correlations of different chemical parameters, including base-to-acid ratio have been made with slagging and fouling behavior. The ionic potential, or ratio of cation valence to cation radius is used as a measure of acid or base behavior. The role of an acid as a polymer former or oxide ion acceptor and a base as a polymer breaker or oxide ion donor is described. The gaseous environment can determine either an acid or base role for iron. Correlations involve concentrations in mole percentages.

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