Deadline: 2019-10-13 Award: $15,000 Open to: Everyone*
Coal is an important energy source and plays a vital role in power production. When it is extracted from mines, it always contains a certain level of moisture, and thus high moisture content has become one of its characteristics. This characteristic is considered undesirable since it transforms coal after strong wetting into clays (also called mudstones) and forms coal masses. Due to the material’s cohesive strength, the coal masses stick on the sidewalls of the coal-receiving and transportation equipment and result in arches (called bridging) once the coal is discharged. Cleaning, scraping and removing arches creates a considerable amount of downtime, inefficiency and excessive labor throughout the entire milling system.
In order to eliminate the processes for cleaning and dislodging coal buildups, the Seeker requires effective ways to prevent coal masses on the coal receiving bins and implementation of coal transportation along the existing equipment in all seasons.