Applied sciences

Zeszyty Naukowe Instytutu Gospodarki Surowcami Mineralnymi Polskiej Akademii Nauk

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Zeszyty Naukowe Instytutu Gospodarki Surowcami Mineralnymi Polskiej Akademii Nauk | 2017 | Nr 97 |

Abstract

Recent empirical research has provided compelling evidence that the proliferation of intellectual property rights (IP) and the fragmentation of patent rights among different patent holders have created barriers to innovation and impediments to the commercialization of scientific discoveries. Legal and economic scholars have suggested that due to the rising number of patent applications, the limited resources in patent offices around the world and the lack of sufficient time to prior art search, examiners have failed to conduct thorough patent examination processes. Moreover, researchers have linked the growing number of overlapping intellectual property rights to the tragedy of the anticommons and to the concept of patent thickets. Multiple studies have been performed in order to develop measures that could verify the existence of patent thickets and to better understand the social and economic impact of fragmentary patent owners. When it comes to the energy sector, the problem of patent thickets is now even more important. As the technological innovation in this sector increases and the energy-related patenting continues to grow, it has been argued that the issue of patent thickets may have a direct impact on investment decisions and the long-run development of this sector. This paper presents an overview of literature on the definition of a patent thicket and summarizes some of the possible factors causing thickets to arise. Additionally, it discusses the recent developments in patent thicket measures and patent thicket identification methods.

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Abstract

The current rockburst hazard conditions in the copper mines are the consequence of mining-induced seismicity of the rock strata whilst the majority of registered rockbursts have been caused by high-energy seismic events. T he analysis of seismic activity in recent years indicates that the region of the Rudna mine is the region of the highest seismic activity. This paper is an attempt at evaluating the seismicity levels in the Rudna mine in the period from 2006-2015, within the entire mine and in its particular sections. Key parameters of seismic activity include the number of registered seismic events, total energy emission levels, and a unit energy factor. The variability of Gutenberg -Richter (GR) parameters are analyzed and the epicenters’ locations are investigated with respect to the stope position. T he distinction is made between low-energy (103 ≤ As < 105 J) and high-energy (As ≥ 105J) seismic events ahead of the stope, in the opening-up cross-throughs and in the gob areas. It appears that the risk level of a high-energy event occurrence in the R udna mine has not changed in recent years and has remained on a high level whilst the differences in seismic activity, in particular mine sections, are attributed to the varied extraction height and varied thickness of rockburst-prone carbonate layers in the roof of the copper ore deposit. The analysis of the epicenters’ locations with respect to the stope reveals that no matter what the seismic energy levels, the largest number of rockbursts are registered in the opening-up cross-through zone. Low-energy tremors are mostly located in the gob areas, high-energy events occur mostly ahead of the stope. T hus, the evaluation of the seismicity conditions in the Rudna mine seems to positively verify the relationship between the number of registered events and the levels of generated seismic energy, taking the local geological and mining conditions and the specificity of the room and pillar mining method into account.

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Abstract

The presented article describes the method for determining one of the trace elements occurring in coalbismuth. The subjects of the analysis were coal type 34, 35 and their fly ashes derived from Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa. The main reason for the research was the extensive use of bismuth in many industry sectors. Additionally, bismuth is on the list of deficit elements, therefore the possibility of obtaining an alternative for its recycling source of it is needed, is required. The research was carried out using atomic absorption spectrometry with electrothermal atomization in a graphite cuvette. The samples were incinerated at 800°C and microwave mineralization in a high-pressure closed system was performed until the spectrometric analysis was achieved. In order to achieve mineralization, a mixture of HF and HNO3 acids was used to turn the samples into acidic solutions. The preparation of the samples was based on available literature data and own observations. In the experiment, the effects of the additive modifier was modified by changing the temperature in further steps: drying, incineration, cooling, atomization and burning were described. In addition, the palladium modifier was used in order to limit secondary reactions and enable the evaporation of matrix components. The measurement conditions which are presented in this article allow for a linear calibration curve to be established. However, this is not clear and the definitive method for determining the bismuth in coal is carried out through the use of ET-AAS.

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Abstract

Caving in the excavation of mining galleries is a dangerous phenomenon, resulting in a threat to the health and life of humans, technological difficulties (transport, ventilation, etc.) and economic losses. Mining galleries list: design errors, runtime errors, errors and random causes among the causes of the caving occurring in recent periods in the excavation of underground coal mines. Examples in the recent period of caving in the excavation of mining galleries in coal mines indicated that one of the main causes of the situation was the loss of capacity and double timber technical wear caused by the corrosion of the profile. In practice, the caving that occur as a result of the technical wear can be divided into the breaking arc of a roof – bar, the loss of stability of one of the heading walls and a total heading collapse. On the basis of the carried out analysis of these cases, guidelines were proposed for improving the safe operation of the workings. The improvement of support stability may be achieved by applying additional supports, stabilizing the structure by bolting the support sets or by introducing a fiber-reinforced concrete coating with injection into the rock mass. Examples of caving occurring in the excavation, for which the preparatory selection of support does not match the geological-mining conditions, were also presented. The summary indicated the importance of diagnostics roadway in the safe and efficient conduct of mining that should be covered by the operational rules, and their scope and frequency should be adapted to the rank of the occurrence of hazard and support construction.

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Abstract

The main energy source in Poland is still hard coal and lignite. The coal combustion process produces large quantities of by-products, e.g. fly ashes, slag furnace and harmful chemical gases (CO2, NOx, sulfur compounds) which enter the atmosphere. Fly ashes, due to their being fine grained (cement-like), chemical and phase compound and reactivity, have also been widely used in various technological solutions e.g. in the production of ordinary cement, hydro-technical cement and the new generation of cements. The adequate amount of fly ashes additive has a positive effect on fresh and hardened cement slurry properties. What is more, it allows for the pro-ecological and economic production of cement mix The exploitation of natural resources is connected with performance mining excavations at different depths. After a certain period of time, those voids break down which, in turn, leads to the slip of upper layers and the so-called landslides forming on the surface. This situation imposes the necessity of basis and sealing rock mass reinforcement. To minimize the risk connected to geotechnical problems on the mining areas, there is a need to use engineering solutions which could improve soil bearing in a universal, economical and efficient way. This leads to the development of new cement slurry recipes used during geoengineering works, especially in the mining areas. Moreover, economic requirements are forcing engineers to use less expensive technical and technological solutions simultaneously maintaining strength properties. An example of such a solution is to use suitable additives to cement slurry which could reduce the total unit cost of the treatment.

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Abstract

Coal mining is one of the most important sectors of the Polish industry. It can be said that the coal is a national raw material. This results in Poland being a pioneer in the European Union in terms of coal mining as well as its use in the production of electricity and heat. There are many companies in Poland which have been established and developed around the coal mining industry aimed at coal extracting. The operations of those companies depends on the condition of the mining companies and their cooperation with them: commercial, service and advisory, called referred to as “mining supporting companies”. The article focuses on the results of a survey carried out in mining supporting companies, such as mining machinery and equipment manufacturers, mining-related service companies and mining-related research and development institutions. The authors evaluated the relationship and dependence of those companies on the mining industry. It was assumed that the measure of the mining supporting companies condition is the overall quantity of public related payments contributed to the state budget and local budgets. In the article, the authors raised the problem of the size of losses for public finances, as a result of the significant limitations of financial flows from the mining companies. The surveyed companies are those associated with the Polish Mining Chamber of Industry and Commerce. As a result, the authors prepared conclusions regarding the dependence of the mining supporting companies on the situation of the mining subsector.

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Abstract

Pollution, climate change and energy security are significant problems. Climate-disrupting fossil fuels are being replaced by clean and non-depletable sources of energy. It requires major changes to energy infrastructures and strong support for promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources. Renewable energy is emerging as a driver of inclusive economic growth and reinforcing energy security. Public entities have to promote renewable energy development by implementing cost-effective national support schemes. By acting at national-level, several barriers to public and private investments could be tackled, addressing the lack of coordination between various authorising bodies at national level and stimulatng the administrative capacity to implement energy projects. It should be effective in promoting transparency for investors and others economic operators. In Poland there is a lack of regulatory policies creating incentives for decentralised energy. Market-based support schemes are still needed for small-scale self-consumption system. Currently operating solutions have been shown in the contrast of the ones applied abroad. The development of clean energy technologies depends on many factors. The author identified few most important ones, mainly financial, regulatory issues, social, environmental and characterized them in this work. The article presents the recommendations of regulatory framework and some proposals for energy cluster based policy’s tools, the introduction of which would significantly facilitate the wider renewable energy uses in Poland.

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Abstract

Since the 1970s, the Legnica-Głogów Copper District has an area of intensive mining of copper. Mining activities resulted in the appearance of induced seismic activity. This situation caused the necessity of setting an underground seismological network. In the mid-1990s, due to the great damage of objects on the surface caused by the ground vibrations due to mining tremors, a surface strong motion seismic network equipped with accelerometers was created. They monitor the vibration levels of both the land and the buildings themselves. This contributed to a better knowledge of the nature of ground vibration and the resistance of objects. In recent years, anthropogenic threats, which include seismicity induced by mining activities, are arousing more and more interest. To be able to develop test methods for seismic source physics, the analysis of the impact of vibrations on the surface and the seismic hazard, network measurement should also be developed and modernized. In the years 2014–2015, the IS-EPOS “Digital research space of induced seismicity for EPOS purposes” project, extended the LUMINEOS modern seismological network presently consisting of 15 seismometers and 10 accelerometers, with the possibility of additional further expansion. The data obtained from the LUMINEOS network complements the existing underground mining network and surface strong motion network. This allows for an advanced seismic analysis.

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Abstract

Low emission has a significant impact on air quality in Poland. Low sources are found which lead to high concentrations of pollutants in the area inhabited by humans. The effects of low emissions on health and life in the polluted areas (Małopolska, Silesia) are conducive to radical decisions regarding the quality of solid fuels and their combustion facilities. At present, local anti-smuggling laws have been introduced in the two provinces banning the burning of the most emitting fuels such as mules, flotoconcentrates and lignite. Regional EU-funded programs for the use of renewable energy sources (RES) and energy efficiency improvement will transition to the implementation phase of the approved projects as of 2017. This is expected to significantly reduce energy consumption for heating buildings and replacing old boilers and automatic furnaces with low-emission heating devices. In the case of households, proving that the residential building has adequate energy efficiency characteristics is necessary in order to receive co-financing for replacing an old solid fuel boiler with a new low-emission boiler,. The paper will present the current situation on the regulation of the fuel market in the household and small–scale consumer sector and the proposal for changes to the law on monitoring and control of solid fuel quality. Another important issue will be significant changes in heating up to 500 kW, proposed by the Ministry of Development in October 2016. The proposed regulation precedes the implementation of the Ecodesign Directive, which will come into effect as of 2022 for room heaters and heating furnaces up to 500 kW for solid fuels. All these actions will help reduce low emissions and improve energy efficiency.

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Abstract

The possibility of the application of nontraditional method of greenhouse gas utilization by the injection of CO2 (sequestration) into porous geological deposits, treated as unconventional gas collectors, requires the fulfillment of basic criteria such as the impact on the environment and long term storage. The important issue is the physical behavior of the deposit during the porous structure saturation phase by carbon dioxide. What should be mentioned first and foremost is: the availability of CO2 transport along the porous structure and adsorption capacity. The work presents the results of water vapor sorption on coal samples from selected Hard Coal Mines of a differentiated carbon content. The received results were presented in the form of sorption and desorption isotherms performed in a temperature of 303 K. It was additionally described with a BET adsorption isotherm. Based on sorption data, a specific surface area was calculated, in accordance with BET theory. The amount of the adsorbed water vapor molecules for the analyzed coal samples was dependent on the degree of metamorphism. The obtained isotherms can be described as type II according to the BET classification. Volumetric type apparatus -adsorption- microburette liquid was used for the sorption experiments. Water vapor sorption in relation to coals allows for the quantitative determination of primary adsorption centers as a measure of adsorbed molecule interconnections with the adsorbent surface. Based on the BET adsorption equation, out of water vapor isotherms, the amount of adsorption active centers, which potentially may take part in CO2 adsorption in coal seams during injection of this gas, was determined. The sorption capacity of coals is determined by the degree of metamorphism, which also has very large impact on the sorption capacity of the deposit.

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Abstract

This article presents the effects of the application of the passive method of flue gas purification from mercury compounds emitted during combustion. The research was carried out on a fluidized bed installation using coal. The dry method of acid gas pollutants reduction was applied during the combustion with the use of 9 modified sodium sorbents. They were fed into a gas jet of 573 K in two molar ratios (sodium contained in the sorbent to the sulphur contained in the fuel). The mercury emission level into the atmosphere was determined based on the mercury content in the solid substrates of the combustion process (in the fuel and the sorbent) and the solid products (fly ash and bottom waste). The combustion process was accompanied by mercury emission 14.7 μgHg/m3. During the removal of acid pollutants from fumes, a decrease in mercury concentration was achieved. The degree of the mercury reduction depended on the type the sorbent used, the manner of modification and the molar ratio in which they were fed into the installation (2 Na/S = 0.5; 2.1). Each time, the more the sorbent was fed into the installation, the bigger the reduction of the mercury emission level. Among the unmodified sorbents, the lowest emission level was achieved for the raw bicarbonate – 3.7 μgHg/m3. For baking soda it was 9.7 μgHg/m3. The application of mechanically modified compounds based on baking soda resulted in the reduction of the Hg emission in fumes up to 2.5–2.6 μgHg/m3. The determined mercury concentration levels in the gases during the purification of the fumes were compared with the accepted Hg emissions contained in the BAT conclusions for large combustion plants. As for all of the existing and newly built plants with a heat capacity below 300 MW, satisfactory effects would be achieved by the use of mechanically modified sorbents in the molar concentration of 2 Na/S = 2.1.

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Abstract

The underground mining of coal deposits in the Upper Silesian Coal Basin (GZW) re-sults in an imbalance in the distribution of the stress in the rock mass, both in the immediate and distant surroundings of mining excavations. The occurrence of seismic tremors, among others, is the consequence of this process,. The intensities of seismic phenomena, which occur in several regions of the GZW (Bytomian Basin, Main Saddle, Main Basin, Kazimierzowska Basin, and the Jejkowice Basin) are very diverse, ranging from tremors unrecognizable by humans to strong tremors of the nature of weak earthquakes (Patyńska and Stec 2017). During the period of 15 years, i.e. from 2001 to 2015, the level of seismic activity changed and de-pended on both the intensity of the excavation work and the variability of the lithological and tectonic structures. On the other hand, the seismic activity analysis has shown that in recent years, despite a decrease in total output, seismic activity and rockburst hazard have increased. One of the rea-sons was the increase in mining output. Almost half of the output came from coal seams under the rockburst hazard. This resulted in an increase in the number of great energy tremors with the energy of 107, 108 and 109 J. It has been shown that the amount of energy tremors has a high impact on the level of the rockburst hazard. Between 2001 and 2015, as many as 20 rockburst were caused by seismic tremors above 107 J with 42 total phenomena (Patyńska 2002–2016). The purpose of characterizing the causes of this phenomenon was determined by the parameters characterizing the structure of the rock mass in places where the rockburst was recorded.

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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to explore the issue of the criteria of project success and the complexity of the subject in the context of environmental and nature conservation projects financed by European Union. The article presents various definitions of project success The article deals with definition and evaluation process of the project success as well as specific conditions of EU project management. Thematic evolution and trends in defining project success are presented through systematic review of literature on project management. The first part of the article focus on reviewing different approaches to the subject of criteria of project success, which is the crucial part of the proces. It is impossible to determine critical success factors (CSF) without deciding on the criteria of the project success. Project success definition is an important and complex project management issue. The success of the projects was considered for the last 50 years in a various ways and by different project management scholars. There is a consensus about the importance of this aspect for the project management practice. However, the project management in the context of EU-funded projects is still subject of further research, as this issue was not yet properly analyzed. The article presents the specific of the environmental and nature conservation EU-funded project judgement proces. The procedures and the scope of the formal and substantive assesment which is the part of selection procedure were described. The paper presents also how formal and substantive assesment criteria correspond with success criteria definitions created so far by the researchers. Moreover, the article analyses how existing asssesment criteria, precisely defined in EU programmes documentation and procedures, can be treated as EU project success criteria. The article presents also the most important challenges and issues in determining the set of success criteria based on assesment criteria set for regional operational programmes and Operational Programme Infrastructure and Environment for 2014–2020 programming period.

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Abstract

Using renewable energy sources for electricity production is based on the processing of primary energy occurring in the form of sun, wind etc., into electrical energy. Economic viability using those sources in small power plants strongly depends on the support system, based mainly on financial instruments. Micro-installations, by using special instruments dedicated to the prosumer market may become more and more interesting not only in terms of environmental energy, but also financial independence. In the paper, the term hybrid power plant is understood to mean a production unit generating electricity or electricity and heat in the process of energy production, in which two or more renewable energy sources or energy sources other than renewable sources are used. The combination of the two energy sources is to their mutual complementarity, to ensure the continuity of the electricity supply. The ideal situation would be if both sources of energy included in the hybrid power plant continuously covered the total demand for energy consumers. Unfortunately, due to the short-term and long-term variability of weather conditions, such a balance is unattainable. The paper assesses the possibility of balancing the hybrid power plant in daily and monthly periods. Basic types of power plants and hybrid components and system support micro-installations were characterized. The support system is based particularly on a system of feed-in tariffs and the possibility of obtaining a preferential loan with a subsidy (redemption of part of the loan size). Then, an analysis of energy and economic efficiency for a standard set of hybrid micro-installations consisting of a wind turbine and photovoltaic panels with a total power of 5 kW, were presented. Fourteen variants of financing, economic efficiency compared with the use of the method of the simple payback period were assumed.

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Abstract

The energy security of the European Union is still a concept, rather than the actual action. It was confirmed by legal regulations that give Member States the possibility of individual control of energy security. Furthermore, EU Member States can perform unilateral energy policy, which is often in the interest of the most powerful countries. The concept of energy solidarity, solidarity mechanisms of energy flows directly from the Treaty of Maastricht. This was intended to help to increase energy security, and above all, its construction at the EU level. The functioning of the European Communities and the European Union is showing that the goal of building energy security of the European Union is still in the process of creation and still remain a certain course of action. Following th energy crisis of 2009 we can observe discussion about the concept of energy union, as a way to build energy security of the European Union. Currently, its energy security is limited to the definition adopted by the European Commission and activities aimed at the development of energy infrastructure of Community interest, which contributes to improving EU energy security. The aim of this article is analyze the concept of energy union and attempt to answer the question whether it has a real chance of success, and whether the concept of the proposed shape will be effective and necessary. These questions are important because of we can observe discrepancies between the regulations, promotion of building a common energy security and the practical action of individual Member States of the European Union.

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Abstract

Waterproof lime dust used in coal mines is an important element in the system of protection against explosions. This is one of the oldest methods used to prevent coal dust explosions and, according to an expert’s opinion, it will remain so for a long time. T he work is a summary of research on the development of a new method of producing waterproof limestone dust to use it as an anti-explosive powder in coal mines. The typical method of hydrophobic dust production (milling limestone with stearic acid) is no longer profitable due to the restructuring of the mining industry. The main research was conducted on raw materials traditionally used during the production of anti-explosion powder, namely limestone meal with a grain size diameter equal to 80 μm (Czatkowice Limestone Quarry) and stearic acid as a modifier. Silicone preparation and bituminous preparation (Bitumenovoranstrich) were used as additional modifiers. The hydrophobization process was conducted with the use of different techniques: from stearic acid ether solution, from stearic acid vapor, from methyl silicone resin or bituminous preparation solutions. A series of research on modified powders to determine hydrophobization and flow properties was conducted. Depending on method of hydrophobization, the test of “floating on water”, the extraction of stearic acid was carried out, water contact angles on compacted material were determined, the thermal decomposition of powder was made. The increase in moisture after wet storage was indicated. The flow properties of powders were measured with the use of the Powder Characteristics Tester. The evaluation of the suitability of each hydrophobization methods in achieving the intended purpose was valued.

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Abstract

One of the parameters which enables the evaluation of carbonaceous material is the thermal effect of wetting. The value of the heat of wetting provides information about the surface energy and the texture of the materials immersed in the wetting liquid. Knowledge of the heat of wetting of the carbonaceous materials is used to research their sorption properties, to characterize the structure and to determine the surface area. A method of me asuring the wetting of the carbonaceous materials as one of the methods to evaluate the carbonaceous materials was proposed. On the basis of research which was conducted, one determined the heat of wetting black coal from the Brzeszcze mine by methyl alcohol and lignites from the Turów and Bełchatów mine. One of activated carbons furnished by the Gryfskand company (WD-extra) was selected for the purpose of the comparison. The enthalpy of immersion was calculated on the basis of the results, the surface of the carbonaceous materials that were studied. It was revealed that the energetic effects of wetting depend both upon the microporous structure and the chemical nature of the adsorbent. The greatest heat of wetting calculated per 1g of the carbonaceous material, which has the most developed surface area and micropore volume, was obtained for the activated carbon. However, the heat of wetting does not increase proportionally to the surface area. The study revealed that the thermal effects of wetting for fossil coal decreases with the increasing of the surface area. The linear relationship was obtained for the three samples which were studied. The highest thermal effects (ΔT) and heat of wetting (Q) among the fossil coals was determined for the lignite from the Bełchatów mine, even though this coal had the least-developed porous structure. One may discern a clear influence of the swelling process upon the measured thermal effects on the basis of this sample.

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Abstract

The article is an analysis of the content of the reports of the national mining companies and vertically integrated operators in the energy value chain, in light of the guidelines of global standards of corporate social responsibility (CSR – Corporate Social Responsibility). A verification of the review of the literature and reports of selected companies in terms of non-financial data publication was conducted, that is information which is based on ES(G) (E – Environment; S – Social; G – Governance), especially considering all environmental and social aspects. It was also indicated which selected mining companies prepare integrated reports (financial and non-financial data), in line with the GRI (Global Report Initiative) guidelines and G4 Mining and Metals – the document contains a set of disclosures for use by all organizations in the Mining and Metals sector. According to the author, universal access to non-financial data expanding the circle of stakeholders and can mitigate the negative public opinion towards the mining industry. Integrated reporting is a new experience for Polish mining companies and vertically integrated energy groups reporting sent to various stakeholder groups, using the GRI guidelines. The analysis showed that only two domestic companies out of the 10, i.e. LW Bogdanka S.A. and KGHM Polska Miedź S.A. submitted the report for 2015, based on the indices dedicated to the, „mining and metals” Industry. The selection of companies has been dictated by their significant share in the mining industry in Poland. The article indicates skipping important aspects of the business activities of mining and vertically integrated enterprises, which should be a necessary part of the reports (due to the obvious impact of mining on the environment and society). It refers to the GRI G4 Mining and Metals guidelines as the indicators which are additional tools to reporting on sustainable development. The purpose of this article is to point out important aspects of the mining companies and vertically integrated enterprises which are omitted and, in the opinion of the author, should be the components of those reports.

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Editorial office

Editorial Board
  • Editor-in-Chief: Krzysztof Galos
  • Deputy Editor-in-Chief: Lidia Gawlik (section: Mineral resources management)
  • Editorial Secretary: Zbigniew Grudziński (section: Fuels and energy)
  • Deputy Editorial Secretary: Zenon Pilecki (section: Mining and geoengineering)
  • Statistical Editor: Jacek Mucha
Publishing Committee
  • Emilia Rydzewska – linguistic editor (Polish)
  • Michelle Atallah – linguistic editor (English)
  • Barbara Sudoł – technical editor

Contact

Mineral and Energy Economy Research Institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences
J. Wybickiego 7A, 31-261 Kraków,
Phone: (+48) 12 632 33-00, Fax: +48 12 632 35-24,
Email: lidia.gawlik@min-pan.krakow.pl

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