These six examples of New Zealand coal show how the appearance of coal changes with its rank. The two examples at right are of low rank, with considerable moisture and relatively little carbon, and are dull. The bottom right example, from Waimamaku Beach in Northland, contains a fossilised broadleaf. The top right example is lignite, also from Northland. The example at bottom centre is sub-bituminous coal from Huntly. It is blacker and contains less moisture. The two examples at top centre and left are both bituminous coal from the West Coast, while the shiny, fractured coal at bottom left is anthracite from the Fox River on the West Coast. Anthracite, the highest-rank coal, has little moisture and its metallic lustre contrasts strongly with the dull, lower-ranked coal at bottom right.
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Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Alastair McLean
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