The formation of coal requires the heat and pressure generated by millions of years of plant material being packed into the Earth’s crust. There is no possible way for humans to recreate that process. Even if we were to try, it would certainly use more energy than would be gained from the coal itself.
The process of coal is really quite interesting. It starts with vegetation and animals. Hundreds of millions of years back the Earth was covered with more plants because there was less cities and people. There was so much swamp lands that the plants and animals did not naturally decay. Instead they built up on each other and became peat. Over time that peat is buried deeper and deeper into the Earth creating immense pressure. This causes oxygen and hydrogen to be released into the air and what is left is coal.
So I suppose your question is…Is there a way to create coal artificially?
Chemists at the Argonne National Laboratory have studied the process of coalification and created an artificial coal from natural resources. They discovered that the process is much less strenuous than previously thought. Actually I did not find tremendous research on this subject which is not all that surprising because it takes so long to create coal naturally. Instead, scientists are spending time on using alternatives to coal, rather than producing coal itself.
There is no possible way to generate coal faster as the process itself is very long.
In places where seams of coal are found today, there were dense forests millions of years ago. Dead vegetation decomposed on the forest floors and formed a thick layer of peat, later rivers covered the peat with deposists of mud and sand. The mud and sand were compressed into sedimentary rock and the peat hardened into coal.
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