AbstractsBusiness Management & Administration

Decision support system of coal mine planning using system dynamics model

by Phongpat Sontamino

Institution: Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg
Department: Geowissenschaften, Geotechnik und Bergbau
Degree: PhD
Year: 2014
Record ID: 1118190
Full text PDF: http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:bsz:105-qucosa-159919


Coal is a fossil fuel mineral, which is presently a major source of electricity and energy to industries. From past to present, there are many coal reserves around the world and large scale coal mining operates in various areas such as the USA, Russia, China, Australia, India, and Germany, etc. Thailand’s coal resources can be found in many areas; there are lignite mining in the north of Thailand, the currently operational Mae Moh Lignite Mine, and also coal reserves in the south of Thailand, such as Krabi and Songkhla, where mines are not yet operating. The main consumption of coal is in electricity production, which increases annually. In 2019, the Thai Government and Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) plans to run a 800 MW coal power plant at Krabi, which may run on imported coal, despite there being reserves of lignite at Krabi; the use of domestic coal is a last option because of social and environmental concerns about the effects of coal mining. There is a modern trend in mining projects, the responsibility of mining should cover not only the mining activity, but the social and environmental protection and mine closure activities which follow. Thus, the costs and decisions taken on by the mining company are increasingly complicated. To reach a decision on investment in a mining project is not easy; it is a complex process in which all variables are connected. Particularly, the responsibility of coal mining companies to society and the environment is a new topic. Thus, a tool to help to recognize and generate information for decision making is in demand and very important. In this thesis, the system dynamics model of coal mine planning is made by using Vensim Software and specifically designed to encompass many variables during the period of mining activity until the mine closure period. The decisions use economic criteria such as Net Present Value (NPV), Net Cash Flow (NCF), Payback Period (PP), and Internal Rate of Return (IRR), etc. Consequently, the development of the decision support system of coal mine planning as a tool is proposed. The model structure covers the coal mining area from mine reserves to mine closure. It is a fast and flexible tool to perform sensitivity analysis, and to determine an optimum solution. The model results are clear and easily understandable on whether to accept or reject the coal mine project, which helps coal mining companies make the right decisions on their policies, economics, and the planning of new coal mining projects. Furthermore, the model is used to analyse the case study of the Krabi coal-fired power plant in Thailand, which may possibly use the domestic lignite at Krabi. The scenario simulations clearly show some potential for the use of the domestic lignite. However, the detailed analysis of the Krabi Lignite Mine Project case shows the high possible risks of this project, and that this project is currently not feasible. Thus, the model helps to understand and confirm that the use of domestic lignite in Krabi for the Krabi Coal Power Plant…