Five Coal Things

Coal Ash video

1. Play it Coal:

Check out the latest video on UNC Charlotte’s ongoing research into how to improve coal ash for both recycling and restoration.


2.     Regional Impact and Beyond:

UNC Charlotte applies research talent to problems and opportunities across the sectors of the region’s economy.  John Daniels, chair and professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and his faculty team are actively researching ways to address environmental impacts created by coal ash, the byproduct of coal-burning electricity production. 


3.     Responsible Re-Use: 

UNC Charlotte has more researchers in coal ash than any other institution in the country, with work focused on strategies that responsibly utilize coal ash, such as geopolymer concrete. This particular concrete mix reduces the carbon footprint created by conventional concrete.


4.     Water Power: 

Coal ash can be recycled into more applications by controlling how it interacts with water. With funding from the Environmental Research and Education Foundation, UNC Charlotte researches ways to make coal ash water-repellent, allowing it to be used in more construction and infrastructure applications.


5.     Meeting of the Minds:

Daniels established and leads an autonomous panel of internationally recognized coal ash experts. The National Ash Management Advisory Board, which includes engineers and researchers from several leading research universities, held its latest meeting this week in Charlotte.

The panel advises Charlotte-based Duke Energy, the nation’s largest energy producer. The panel’s recommendations, such as including sustainability and life cycle analysis into design, are increasingly applied across the energy industry.