, Volume 23, Issue 1, pp 3–12 | Cite as

Effect of pore characteristics on coalbed methane adsorption in middle-high rank coals

  • Xianfeng LiuEmail author
  • Xueqiu HeEmail author


Gas hazards are still one of the most severe disasters restricting mine safety, and the occurrence of them is heavily dependent on the storage and transportation of methane in coal seams. In order to investigate the influence of pore structure characteristics of middle-high rank coals (V daf  < 25 %) on coalbed methane adsorption, six coal samples of different metamorphism were studied with regard to their surface chemical structure and pore morphological features using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, low-pressure nitrogen gas adsorption (LP-N2GA) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and their coalbed methane adsorption capacities were also tested. Based on the Langmuir equation, the Langmuir volume and Langmuir pressure were obtained to characterize the adsorption capacity, and the impact of structural parameters of coal samples on coalbed methane adsorption was analyzed. The results indicate that the pore shape varies a lot between coal samples, suggesting the significant heterogeneity on coal surface. The micropores (<10 nm) in coal samples are well-developed, and the pore size distributions from adsorption analysis are multi-modal. Pore characteristics in coal samples is affected by coalification to a large extent. The adsorption volume of gas mainly concentrates in micropores, and the adsorption capacities of different coal samples display remarkable difference. The Langmuir volume (V L) is closely related to micropores, but shows little relationship with mesopores, while the Langmuir pressure (P L) is remarkably affected by both micropores and mesopores. The research results are of great importance for the coalbed methane storage and the accurate prediction of gas emission.


Middle-high rank coal Surface chemical characteristics Pore structure Coalbed methane Adsorption capacity 



This work is supported by the Key Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51634001), the University of Science and Technology Beijing Foundation (No. 06500033), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51374216) and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (2009kz03).


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.State Key Lab of Coal Resources and Safe Mining, School of Resources and Safety EngineeringChina University of Mining & Technology (Beijing)BeijingChina
  2. 2.School of Civil and Resources EngineeringUniversity of Science and Technology BeijingBeijingChina

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