Anthracite is the highest rank of coal, and is typically used for residential and commercial space heating. It is a hard, brittle, and black lustrous coal, often referred to as hard coal, containing a high percentage of fixed carbon and a low percentage of volatile matter.
The moisture content of fresh-mined anthracite generally is less than 15 percent. The heat content of anthracite ranges from 22 to 28 million BTU per ton on a moist, mineral-matter-free basis. The heat content of anthracite coal consumed in the United States averages 25 million BTU per ton, on the as-received basis (i.e., containing both inherent moisture and mineral matter).
Since the 1980s, anthracite refuse or mine waste has been used for steam electric power generation. This fuel typically has a heat content of 15 million BTU per ton or less.
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