Aspire Mining says initial coke testing of coal from its Ovoot project in Mongolia has confirmed its high quality coking and blending potential.

Coke test work using various blends was conducted at the ALS Research facility in Queensland, Australia using combinations of the coking coal with an Australian hard coking coal, and Australian low-fluidity semi-soft coking coal and recycled coke oven residues (known as coke breeze).

The company says the test work has shown the Ovoot coal can be used to replace hard coking coal in a batch when using lower quality semi-soft coking coals.

“Ovoot coking coal has extremely high vitrinite content, which provides the coal with high fluidity and plastic properties and one of the highest Gray King Coke types available in the market,” says Aspire’s managing director David Paull.

“These attributes indicate superior blend carrying capacity and when combined with its relatively high rank of 1.2, indicate that coke producers can use Ovoot coking coal in blends with hard coking and weakly caking coals to produce a quality coke,” he says.

The testing of this proposition showed that in batches including coke breeze, the addition of Ovoot coking coal can be used to replace premium hard coking coal and improve overall coke quality.

“This provides the potential for Ovoot coking coal to be used in blends to upgrade similar rank thermal and low-caking semi-soft coals from Mongolia’s South Gobi region to improve the overall quality of Mongolia’s coking coal exports,” says David Paull.

Aspire has now commenced discussions with customers to further future sales negotiations and has also moved to register the brand name ‘Vitrocoal’ to reflect the presence of nearly pure vitrinite in the Ovoot coking coal. The 219 million tonne Ovoot coking coal project in northern Mongolia is the country’s second largest coal reserve and is slated for first production in 2016.

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