Coal was formed in Paleolithic era ecosystems ( lake
basins, river deltas or low lying areas ) and is made of the
material of prehistoric plants. Initially, through solar
energy they produced hydrocarbons from air, water and
mineral matters. Upon decay they sank into the swamps
which were environments without oxygen. They could
not decompose by normal biological processes. Evidence
of this origin of coal and specific structure of prehistoric
ecosystems can be found in numerous palaeontological
Further geological processes then overlaid the layers of
biologic origin with other materials – often suddenly as a
result of various natural disasters. It is evidenced by the
transitions between the coal seam and the surrounding
rock being frequently very sharp.
The matter initially similar to turf gradually got deeper
and thicker. Owing to increasing pressures and
temperatures water and other substances were displaced
from it while the share of carbon was built up.
The conversion of biological material to coal can be
expressed by this simplified equation:
biological material (cellulose) = carbon dioxide +
water + methane + carbon (coal)
How coal was formed
Coal extraction methods Due to different
geological formations different techniques were
developed and improved to extract coal. From
the earliest bell pit method to modern drift,
opencast, and deep mining extraction methods.
Deep mine - At the centre of the syncline, coal
occurs at much greater depths and therefore it
is more economic to sink a shaft for the
extraction of the coal.
Drift - Inclined roadways were driven to exploit
shallow coal which would be uneconomic to be
worked by shafts. Due to the geology some of the
North Staffordshire coal seams, the drift mine was
introduced to extract the coal. The photograph
shows the 1260 yard long main intake drift at
Silverdale which 16ft wide, 12ft high and equipped
with a 48in conveyor belt capable of discharging
750 tonnes of coal an hour.
COAL UTILIZATION - combustion of
coal or its conversion into useful
solid, gaseous, and liquid
products. By far the most important
use of coal is in combustion,
mainly to provide heat to the
boilers of electric power plants.
Metallurgical coke is the major
product of coal conversion. In
addition, techniques for gasifying
and liquefying coal into fuels or
into feedstocks for the chemical
industry are well developed, but
their commercial viability depends
on the availability and price of the
competing fossil fuels, petroleum
and natural gas.
Formation of Petroleum(L. petroleum, from
Latin: petra (rock) + Latin: oleum (oil)). The greek
word petra is a loanword from Greek πέτρα.
Petroleum or crude oil, is a naturally occurring
flammable liquid consisting of a complex mixture
of hydrocarbons of various molecular weights and
other liquid organic compounds, that are found in
geologic formations beneath the Earth's surface.
A fossil fuel, it is formed when large quantities of
dead organisms, usually zooplankton and algae,
are buried underneath sedimentary rock and
undergo intense heat and pressure.
Petroleum is recovered mostly through oil drilling. This comes after the studies of
structural geology (at the reservoir scale), sedimentary basin analysis, reservoir
characterization (mainly in terms of porosity and permeable structures). It is refined and
separated, most easily by boiling point, into a large number of consumer products, from
petrol (or gasoline) and kerosene to asphalt and chemical reagents used to make
plastics and pharmaceuticals. Petroleum is used in manufacturing a wide variety of
materials, and it is estimated that the world consumes about 88 million barrels each day.
The extraction of petroleum is the process by
which usable petroleum is extracted and
removed from the earth. Geologists use seismic
surveys to search for geological structures that
may form oil reservoirs. The "classic" method
includes making an underground explosion
nearby and observing the seismic response that
provides information about the geological
structures under the ground . However,
"passive" methods that extract information from
naturally-occurring seismic waves are also
Other instruments such as gravimeters and magnetometers are also sometimes used in the
search for petroleum. Extracting crude oil normally starts with drilling wells into the
underground reservoir. When an oil well has been tapped, a geologist (known on the rig as the
"mudlogger") will note its presence. Such a "mudlogger" is known to be sitting on the rig.
Historically, in the USA, some oil fields existed where the oil rose naturally to the surface, but
most of these fields have long since been used up, except in certain places in Alaska. Often
many wells (called multilateral wells) are drilled into the same reservoir, to ensure that the
extraction rate will be economically viable. Also, some wells (secondary wells) may be used to
pump water, steam, acids or various gas mixtures into the reservoir to raise or maintain the
reservoir pressure, and so maintain an economic extraction rate
Utilization of Petroleum - is necessary for a great number of human needs. Today, petroleum
is mostly used as a source of energy, being rich in combustible carbon in the production of
electricity or running some sorts of heat engines.
When thinking of petroleum, the average American usually equates it with gasoline, since
this is the one petroleum product that the average consumer has to purchase on a regular
basis. It is relatively common and low-cost, often fluctuating in price due to economic,
political, or supply level concerns. Therefore, gasoline gets the most attention, but petroleum
is used to make several other products which in turn have several uses themselves.
Raw petroleum (also known as crude oil) is used in three major ways: Transportation,
Electricity Generation, and Material Production.
• Gasoline - used to power automobiles, planes,
boats, and many other forms of transportation
• Diesel Fuel - used for powering automobiles
• Kerosene - used in lighting and cooking
• Heating Oil - used to provide houses with necessary
• Lubricating oil - keeps machinery cool
• Grease - necessary in automobile repair, train
tracks, machinery upkeep, etc.
• Tar - used in construction