The Energy Principle of Coal and Gas Outbursts: Experimentally Evaluating the Role of Gas Desorption
© 2020, Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature. Outburst energy is a major factor influencing coal and gas outbursts, albeit its estimation is difficult owing to the lack of amenable means for quantification of gas desorption. In the past decades, determining the mechanism of outbursts is one of the most challenging issues in rock mechanics. In this study, a triaxial coal and gas outburst simulation system was employed to perform simulated experiments using He (to rule out the influence from gas ad-desorption), N2, and CO2. This facilitated understanding of the energy principle underlying the said outbursts and evaluation of the effects of gas desorption on outburst development. Results of this study indicate that outburst energy and energy consumption are influenced by several factors, including outburst pressure, outburst intensity, ejection distance, and particle size of ejected coal. Among these, gas desorption demonstrates the greatest influence when performing controlled tests (using He). Considering the effects of gas desorption, the total outburst energy can be increased by 1.35–2.95 times, thereby causing an enormous increase in the destructive potential of outbursts. Additionally, values of the coal crushing and transport energies can be enhanced by the order of 118.9–206.6% and 157.8–406.6%, respectively, thereby resulting in a stronger conveying capacity of outburst coal–gas flow along with severe coal fragmentation. A further analysis of the energy distribution indicated that in the development stage, gas desorbed from coal acts as the force driving coal transport, whereas free gas energy is mainly consumed during coal crushing. Findings of this study highlight the importance of quantifying contributions of coal gas towards effective interpretation of outburst-causing mechanisms.