Coal Exploration

Coal is a naturally combustible solid that is still an important fossil fuel especially for generating electricity. Coal is classified by hardness and carbon content as anthracite, bituminous coal, sub- bituminous coal, and lignite. Spectroscopy can be used in coal exploration to identify coal as well as related minerals including: quartz, kaolinite, illite, montmorillonite, chlorite, pyrite, calcite, and siderite. Coal exhibits important spectral hydrocarbon absorption features at 1700, 2100 and 2300-2500 nanometers.

Spectral Evolution’s SR-6500 with three thermoelectrically cooled photodiode arrays delivers the ultimate in high resolution and stable performance for coal exploration. The SR-6500 offers the ultimate in high resolution in a portable instrument:

  • 1.5nm @ 700nm
  • 3.0nm @ 1500nm
  • 3.8nm @ 2100nm

The SR-6500 can be used with bare fiber or field of view fiber- attached lenses for field outcrop analysis or with our ILM-660 100 Watt tungsten halogen light source or for lab and core shack analysis the Miniprobe contact probe with a 3mm spot size and built-in light source. With the Miniprobe or ILM-660, the SR-6500 is well-suited for capturing high resolution scans of coal pathfinder minerals or coal itself. These scans will show additional features not seen with standard resolution spectrometers.

Using the SR-6500 with EZ-ID, a geologist can quickly identify an alteration mineral that may not be readily identifiable by sight, matching an unknown sample against a known spectral library. EZ-ID allows the geologist to select specific spectral regions to fine-tune the matching process for a more precise ID. If the geologist wants to look at a particular absorption feature, the geologist can highlight that or other features and EZ-ID provides new matches. EZ-ID includes a Library Builder module for the inclusion of project and location specific scans of known samples for comparison with target samples.

EZ-ID works right from the DARWin SP Data Acquisition software included with all SPECTRAL EVOLUTION spectrometers and spectroradiometers. All spectra collected with an SR-6500 are saved as ASCII files for easy import into other 3rd party analysis software for mine planning, mineral mapping and 3D imaging.

The SR-6500 allows you to focus on features that are not apparent with a lower resolution instrument. With
EZ-ID you can build your own library from known coal samples to match to target samples for fast identification.

The SR-6500 delivers the highest resolution available in a portable spectrometer.