As the removal of sulfur from coal prior to combustion acquires more importance in order to meet evermore stringent antipollution regulations, research on the development of methods for the cleaning of coal continues to expand. Reviews are available which describe the various methods for desulfurizing coal (1, 2, 3). The sulfur content in coal is usually a few per cent, but it can range from less than 0.5 per cent to as much as 8 per cent or more. Much of the sulfur is inorganic in nature, occurring in discrete mineral phases; the inorganic sulfur is mostly pyrite with small amounts of sulfates such as gypsum. Part of the sulfur in coal is termed organic sulfur, being intimately bound to the organic coal matrix. The chemical nature of this organic sulfur is not well established. During the desulfurization of coal, some of the coarse inorganic sulfur components can be removed.
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