The origin and distribution of HAPs elements in relation to maceral composition of the A1 lignite bed (Paleocene, Calvert Bluff Formation, Wilcox Group), Calvert mine area, east-central Texas
International Journal of Coal Geology
- Sharon S. Crowley , Peter D. Warwick , Leslie F. Ruppert , and James Pontolillo
The origin and distribution of twelve potentially Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs; As, Be, Cd, Cr, Co, Hg, Mn, Ni, Pb, Sb, Se, and U) identified in the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments were examined in relation to the maceral composition of the A1 bed (Paleocene, Calvert Bluff Formation, Wilcox Group) of the Calvert mine in east-central Texas. The 3.2 m-thick A1 bed was divided into nine incremental channel samples (7 lignite samples and 2 shaley coal samples) on the basis of megascopic characteristics. Results indicate that As, Cd, Cr, Ni, Pb, Sb, and U are strongly correlated with ash yield and are enriched in the shaley coal samples. We infer that these elements are associated with inorganic constituents in the coal bed and may be derived from a penecontemporaneous stream channel located several kilometers southeast of the mining block. Of the HAPs elements studied, Mn and Hg are the most poorly correlated to ash yield. We infer an organic association for Mn; Hg may be associated with pyrite. The rest of the trace elements (Be, Co, and Se) are weakly correlated with ash yield. Further analytical work is necessary to determine the mode of occurrence for these elements. Overall, concentrations of the HAPs elements are generally similar to or less than those reported in previous studies of lignites of the Wilcox Group, east-central region, Texas. Petrographic analysis indicates the following ranges in composition for the seven lignite samples: liptinites (5–8%), huminites (88–95%), and inertinites (trace amounts to 7%). Samples from the middle portion of the A1 bed contain abundant crypto-eugelinite compared to the rest of the samples; this relationship suggests that the degradation of plant material was an important process during the development of the peat mire. With the exception of Hg and Mn, relatively low levels of the HAPs elements studied are found in the samples containing abundant crypto-eugelinite. We infer that the peat-forming environment for this portion of the coal bed was very wet with minimal detrital input. Relatively high concentrations of crypto-humotelinite were found in samples from the top and base of the coal bed. The presence of abundant crypto-humotefinite in this part of the coal bed suggests the accumulation of wood-rich peat under conditions conducive to a high degree of tissue preservation in the peat mire. Although several of the trace elements (Be, Co, Ni, and Sb) exhibit enrichment in these samples, they are not necessarily chemically associated with humotelinite. We infer that these elements, with the exception of Be, are possibly associated with deposition of the roof and floor rock of the coal bed; however, further analytical work would be necessary to confirm this hypothesis. Beryllium may have an organic origin.
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- Journal Article
- The origin and distribution of HAPs elements in relation to maceral composition of the A1 lignite bed (Paleocene, Calvert Bluff Formation, Wilcox Group), Calvert mine area, east-central Texas
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- International Journal of Coal Geology
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- 17 p.
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