United States

River View Complex

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Categories

Overview

Mine TypeUnderground
StatusActive
Commodities
  • Coal (thermal)
Mining Method
  • Continuous
  • Room-and-pillar
Production Start2009
Mine Life2056
SnapshotThe River View complex is composed of the River View (Mine #1) and Henderson County (Mine #2) mines along with shared preparation, loadout, and other ancillary facilities.

The River View mine is located in Union County, Kentucky and is currently the largest room-and-pillar coal mine in the United States.

The Henderson County mine is located in Henderson County, Kentucky and is currently under development, with full production expected to begin in 2024 from the No. 9 seam.
Related Asset

Owners

SourceSource
CompanyInterestOwnership
Alliance Resource Partners L.P. 100 % Indirect
River View Coal, LLC. (operator) 100 % Direct
River View Coal, LLC owns and operates the River View Complex. River View Coal, LLC is an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Alliance Resource Partners L.P.

Contractors

ContractorContractDescriptionRef. DateSource
Louisville Gas & Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Power supply Electricity is provided by Kentucky Utilities. Electricity is sourced from a 69 KV line to multiple substations ranging in size from 10-14 MVA located at the prep plant and the Mine #1 portal facilities. Similar support facilities are in place at the Mine #2 slope and will be constructed at the Mine #2 portal. Dec 31, 2023

Deposit type

  • Sedimentary

Summary:

The River View complex extracts coal from both the WKY9 and the WKY11 located in the southeastern flank of the Illinois Basin.

The WKY11 is about 200 to 400 feet deep and the WKY9 is about 200 to 500 feet deep. The resource area is bounded by the Ohio River, the Rough Creek-Shawneetown Fault System, previous mining, and influences associated with mineability discussed above. Strata dip gently to the north and east across the property.

WEST KENTUCKY NO. 11 SEAM
The immediate roof over the WKY11 is a dark gray to black fossiliferous shale that averages about 0.5 feet thick, commonly call “gob”. Above this is the Providence Limestone. This limestone varies in thickness from zero to as much as about seven feet; but is generally around 3 to 4 feet thick over much of the WKY11. Sporadically throughout the reserve, the very thin West Kentucky No. 12 seam occurs just above the Providence Limestone. This is overlain by a silty gray shale of variable thickness due to erosion from the overlying Anvil Rock sandstone (Anvil Rock). The Anvil Rock is the primary aquifer in the region. This sandstone is known to scour the immediate roof and, on some occasions, into the coal itself. When the sandstone comes into close proximity to the WKY11, there’s an increased risk of water inflow into the mine due to the Anvil Rock being an aquifer. In general, areas where the Anvil Rock is within five feet of the WKY11 are avoided during mining. The floor of the WKY11 is predominately a fireclay grading down into a limey claystone.

WEST KENTUCKY NO. 9 SEAM
The immediate roof over a vast majority of the WKY9 is a black, fissile shale, often containing fossils. This black shale is generally from one to two feet thick. The black shale is overlain by dark gray shale. The lower ten to twelve feet of the gray shale is very dark and often contains siderite nodules and bands. Above the gray shale typically grades to a silty and eventually sandy shale. Above this is a waterbearing sandstone that varies in thickness and extent. This sandstone can encroach on the immediate and main roof. Under these conditions, ground control issues can occur and require additional support to maintain stability. The WKY9 is underlain by a soft underclay that grades to a limey claystone containing limestone nodules.

The WKY9 and WKY11 are consistent in thickness over their respective resource boundaries with the seams averaging 4.62 feet (WKY9) and 4.64 feet WKY11 in thickness. On a 1.50 float, dry basis, the WKY9 averages about 8.9% ash, 3.2% sulfur, and 13,050 btu/lb. On a 1.50 float, dry basis, the WKY11 averages about 6.9% ash, 3.2% sulfur, and 13,360 btu/lb.

The Henderson Union Resources (HUR) includes the WKY11, WKY7, and WKY6. The seams range between 100 and 800 feet in depth.

The West Kentucky No.9 resources previously included in the Henderson Union Resources (HUR) have been designated for development as part of the existing River View operation as the Henderson County mine and will share preparation and loadout facilities.

The HUR is bound to the north and west by the Ohio River and sets of northeast-southwest trending faults of the Rough Creek Shawneetown system. The south is bound by previous mining and faulting. It is bound to the east by conditions related to the Anvil Rock sandstone (WKY11 only), as well as previous mining. In addition to these resource defining parameters, the WKY11, WKY7, and WKY6 resources are defined by areas where the coal is thin or absent. The coal-bearing strata dips gently to the north and east across the resource area.

WEST KENTUCKY NO. 7 SEAM
The WKY7 immediate roof varies between carbonaceous black shale, gray shale, or sandy shale. The immediate roof is overlain by sandstone, which can locally scour into the seam. The floor is generally a dark gray, silty claystone that is underlain by a sandy shale containing limestone nodules. In some areas of the WKY7, the claystone-shale immediate floor is replaced by sandstone.

WEST KENTUCKY NO. 6 SEAM
The immediate roof for the WKY6 seam is typically a carbonaceous black shale ranging between one to two feet thick. Above this black shale is a dark gray shale with siderite nodules or a silty gray shale. The immediate floor is normally a sandy claystone.

Reserves at December 31, 2023

Mineral reserves and resources are using a cut off thickness of 4.00 feet.
CategoryTonnage CommodityMarketable Coal
Proven M tons Coal (thermal) 169.1 M tons
Probable M tons Coal (thermal) 141.3 M tons
Proven & Probable M tons Coal (thermal) 310.4 M tons
Measured 127.3 M tons Coal (thermal)
Indicated 227.9 M tons Coal (thermal)
Measured & Indicated 355.2 M tons Coal (thermal)
Inferred 57.8 M tons Coal (thermal)
Total Resource 413 M tons Coal (thermal)

Mining Methods

  • Continuous
  • Room-and-pillar

Summary:

River View Complex (RVC) consisting of the River View (Mine #1) existing mine and Henderson County (Mine #2) development mine.

The RVC has the capability to mine from both the WKY9 and WKY11 seams. This is accomplished using the room and pillar mining method. There are currently ten operating split air super sections. These units will be transitioned between the two mines as needed. The super section arrangement allows for the operation of two continuous miners simultaneously. Infrastructure within the mines includes conveyors, electrical equipment, ventilation, and equipment necessary for water distribution, and can support up to twelve super sections.

Mine #1 has two existing portals where men and materials are transported underground. Raw coal is transported by belt from the underground mine to the surface at the Mine #1 slope access located just northwest of the primary Mine #1 shaft access. The coal is transported by belt from the Mine #1 slope access to the complex’s processing and coal loading facilities.

The Henderson Union WKY9 seam resources have been moved to River View as part of the Mine #2 development. Development of the underground corridor from the UC Mining site using the existing slope to the proposed portal facilities commenced in 2023 and first production from the WKY9 is expected to begin in 2024.

The target completion date for the Mine #2 portal is mid-year of 2025. Coal will move from the Mine #2 slope on an overland conveyor that will tie into the raw coal storage at the Mine #1 slope for transport to the shared processing facilities. The Mine #2 portal will be connected to the Mine #2 slope through an underground corridor.

Underground equipment required at the RVC includes, but is not limited to:
- Continuous miner;
- Shuttle car;
- Double boom roof bolter;
- Truss bolter;
- Battery scoop;
- Fork trucks;
- Personnel carrier (mantrip);
- Feeder breaker;
- Road grader;
- Belt conveyor;
- Transformer/substation;
- Refuge Alternative chamber;
- Rock dusters;
- Miscellaneous dewatering pumps.

Surface equipment required at the RVC includes, but is not limited to:
- Dozers (various sizes);
- Miscellaneous preparation plant equipment;
- End loader;
- Man and material hoisting equipment;
- Ventilation fan;
- Substation;
- Mobile crane;
- Belt conveyor;
- Tractor and dirt scraping pans;
- Side by side personnel carriers;
- Fresh water wells.

Personnel required to operate and maintain the RVC is generally obtained through the hiring of both skilled and unskilled workers from the immediate area. Salaried positions at the RVC are made up of production managers, business managers, engineers, information technology, preparation plant operators, maintenance foreman, purchasing agents, and safety specialists. Hourly positions include equipment operators on the surface and underground, general laborers, dust sampling technicians, mechanics, examiners, warehouse clerks, etc. Total headcount numbers can vary depending on the market and demand for coal. Typical headcount ranges from between 750 to 1,000 workers, depending on the number of super sections operating.

There are approximately 310.4M clean tons remaining in the RVC reserve to be mined within the controlled properties. The current life of reserve plan anticipates exhausting the reserve in 2056.

Comminution

Crushers and Mills

Milling equipment has not been reported.

Processing

  • Column flotation
  • Gravity separation
  • Spiral concentrator / separator
  • Wet Screening
  • CHPP
  • Flotation
  • Dense media separation
  • Magnetic separation
  • Dewatering

Summary:

Both mines will utilize the existing preparation plant, refuse disposal, and loadout facilities. River View's preparation plant has throughput capacity of 2,700 tons of raw coal per hour.

The coal is transported by belt from River View Mine (Mine #1) slope access to the complex’s processing and coal loading facilities located about 3.0 miles northwest of the Mine #1 slope access. From the processing facilities, the processed coal is transported by belt about 0.6 miles to the mine’s barge loading facility on the Ohio River. Coal will move from the Mine #2 slope on an overland conveyor that will tie into the raw coal storage at the Mine #1 slope for transport to the shared processing facilities.

The plant consists of three (3) units. Each unit consists of three circuits, a heavy media cyclone circuit (3" X 1mm), a water only cyclone/spiral circuit (1mm X 100 mesh), and a flotation circuit (100mesh X 325mesh).

The heavy media (HM) cyclone circuit includes a heavy media sump, which is fed sized coal (3” X 1mm). The heavy media pump moves media and sized raw coal to the 48” heavy media cyclone. Heavy media cyclones make a gravity separation at a specific gravity of approximately 1.5 -1.6 (specific gravity is adjusted to meet the coal quality specification as needed). The heavy media cyclone overflow (clean coal) discharges from the cyclone to the clean coal flume boxes, to the clean coal drain, and rinse screens. The clean coal screens separate the coal into two sizes (plus ½" and minus ½") and remove media from the clean coal before discharging. The plus ½" clean coal is drained, rinsed, and discharged as final product onto the clean coal collect conveyor. The minus ½" clean coal is discharged into clean coal centrifuges for additional dewatering. The dewatered coal is discharged onto the clean coal collect conveyor, and the effluent from the clean coal centrifuges is discharged to the dilute media sump. The heavy media cyclone underflow (refuse) discharges from the cyclone to the HM refuse flume boxes and to the refuse drain-and-rinse screens. The refuse drain-and-rinse screens remove the magnetite from the refuse prior to discharging directly to the refuse collecting conveyor. The media that is drained from the heavy media screens is piped back to the HM sump. Media that is rinsed at the drain and rinse screens is piped to a dilute sump and pumped to magnetic separators. The magnetic separators remove the magnetite and return it back to the heavy media sump. The effluent from the separators is reused in the plant as process water in the water only cyclone/spiral circuit. The specific gravity in the heavy media sump is regulated by a magnetite screw and magnetite bin or make-up water.

The water only/spiral circuit includes a raw coal sump, which is fed sized coal (1mm X 0). The raw coal pump moves water and raw coal to the water-only cyclones. The overflow from the water-only cyclones is clean coal and is piped to a clean coal classifying sump. The underflow is reprocessed using spiral concentrators. The spiral concentrators make three products, refuse, middlings, and clean coal. The clean coal is piped to the clean coal classifying sump. The middlings are piped back to the raw coal sump for reprocessing, and the refuse is piped to a high-frequency refuse screen for dewatering and discharged to the refuse collect conveyor. The clean coal collected in the clean coal classifying sump is pumped to 15" clean coal classifying cyclones. The clean coal classifying cyclones make a size separation of approximately 100 mesh. The underflow of the clean coal classifying cyclone is plus 100 mesh and is piped to clean coal sieves for dewatering. The dewatered coal is discharged to screenbowl centrifuges for further dewatering. The screenbowl centrate is recycled back to the clean coal sump and the main effluent is piped to the thickener. The overflow of the clean coal classifying cyclones and the water from the clean coal sieves is piped to an ultrafine sump.

The flotation circuit includes the ultrafine sump, which is fed sized coal (100 mesh X 0). The ultrafine sump will pump water and the 100 mesh X 0 material to the 6” deslime cyclones and will make a nominal separation at approximately 325 mesh. The plus 325 mesh (underflow) will discharge and feed flotation columns. The minus 325 mesh (reject) will discharge and be piped to the thickener. Chemical and air is added to the columns, and clean coal will exit the top of the columns and be piped to the screenbowl centrifuges. The refuse from the columns exits the columns and is piped to the thickener.

The thickener feed is mixed with anionic and/or cationic chemicals that aid in the settling of the solids. The settled solids are concentrated and fed to the thickener underflow pumps. The thickener underflow pumps, pump the concentrated refuse away to a slurry disposal site. The clarified water that overflows from the thickener is collected and transferred to a clarified water sump for reuse as process water throughout the plant.

Water Supply

Summary:

The River View Complex (RVC) gets its potable water from the Union County Water District and Henderson County Water District. Water used for underground operations is reclaimed and filtered from underground collection sources as well. Water used for coal processing is sourced directly from the Ohio River and nearby tributaries.

Production

CommodityUnits202320222021202020192018201720162015
Coal (thermal) M tons 9.9109.99.4119.898.69.1
All production numbers are expressed as clean coal.

Operational metrics

Metrics2023202220212020201920182017
Hourly processing capacity 2,700 tons2,700 tons2,700 tons2,700 tons2,700 tons2,700 tons2,700 tons
Coal tonnes mined 15,964 k tons15,106 k tons19,052 k tons

Production Costs

Commodity production costs have not been reported.

Financials

Units202320222021
Book Value M USD 312.7  229  199.3  

Heavy Mobile Equipment

HME TypeModelQuantityRef. DateSource
Continuous Miner 18 Dec 31, 2023
Dozer Caterpillar D6T 1 Aug 30, 2018
Dozer Caterpillar D8R 1 Aug 30, 2018

Personnel

Mine Management

Job TitleNameProfileRef. Date
Buyer Jeff Burton LinkedIn Apr 3, 2024
Maintenance Manager Tim Thomas LinkedIn Apr 3, 2024
Manager - Coal Preparation Joe White LinkedIn Apr 11, 2024
Safety Director Chris Williams LinkedIn Apr 11, 2024

EmployeesYear
785 2023
800 2022
715 2021
733 2020
845 2019
664 2018
602 2017
593 2016
609 2015
580 2014
587 2013

Aerial view:

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