Development of Autonomous Machine Navigation Concepts for Mining Thin-Seam Coal Reserves

Grants and Contracts Details


I. A. Project Coal Coal has been, and continues to be, an important natural resource for Kentucky. Currently, 91% of Kentucky's electricity is generated from coal-burning power plants and the Commonwealth has the lowest electricity cost in the nation. In FY 2004-2005, the coal industry brought $3.25B into Kentucky from out-of-state and coal companies paid $1 84M in coal severance taxes. In 2004, the coal industry paid $759M in direct wages to over 15,000 persons1. However, as will be pointed out, Kentucky's thicker coal seams are being depleted and the remaining vast resources of coal in the Commonwealth are located primarily in thin seams that are difficult to mine. Consequently, the goal of this project is to begin developing technologies that will enable the economic mining of thin-seam coal resources located in the eastern coalfields of Kentucky. The importance of this issue is addressed in "Coal: Energy at Kentucky's Feet" in the 2005 Comprehensive Energy Strategy which states that ". . .Kentucky' s low-cost electricity must include the role played by coal." The report also recognizes that Kentucky coal production has significantly declined over the last decade. Therefore, in order for the Commonwealth to continue to attract industry because of low-cost energy and to grow its economy, it is imperative that the decline in coal production be reversed.
Effective start/end date2/15/089/30/09


  • KY Office of Energy Policy: $94,023.00


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