News & Presentations
WYOMING ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY COUNCIL DISMISSES PERMIT APPEAL, ALLOWS BROOK MINE TO MOVE FORWARD
December 17, 2020
Following a hearing on December 16, the Wyoming Environmental Quality Council (“EQC”) dismissed an appeal meant to delay the Brook Mine, the state’s first coal mine in over forty years. In doing so the EQC affirmed the grant of the mine and reclamation permit issued by the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality (“DEQ”), who had formally approved the mine permit in July. The new mine will be located in the historic mining area north of Sheridan.
The Brook Mine and Ramaco Carbon have been vocally supported by a wide range of Wyoming business and economic leaders, and dozens of state legislators and officials. Following its approval this summer, DEQ Director Todd Parfitt praised the “incredible amount of time and effort” put into ensuring the permit had sound environmental and quality of life protections.
RAMACO CEO ELECTED TO CHAIR NATIONAL COAL COUNCIL
November 6, 2020
The leader of a coal technology firm with operations in Wyoming was elected to chair the National Coal Council, a federal advisory group providing guidance to the nation’s energy secretary. Randall Atkins has been a sustained advocate for advancing coal to carbon products research, or the effort to utilize coal beyond just electricity production.
“The coming years may be far brighter for the coal industry than many realize, and it’s been my privilege to work with the National Coal Council to help chart a new course toward this stronger future,” Atkins said in a statement. “Regardless of dated perceptions, there are vast, exciting and innovative developments being made in the use of coal both in the United States and abroad. The NCC has been at the forefront for providing the research, policy analysis, and industry recommendations our country needs to utilize its most abundant national resource.”
RAMACO CARBON CEO COMMENTS ON FUTURE OF COAL POST-ELECTION
October 19, 2020
In a podcast for top market intelligence firm S&P Global, Ramaco Carbon CEO Randall Atkins comments on the coal industry and future, bipartisan areas of support.
“There’s a number of aspects about what we’re doing, which is more sort of a technological use of coal, that I think would be probably well received by both parties even if you have a sort of a general bias against the notion of coal.”
RAMACO HIRES FORMER NASA ENGINEER AS DIRECTOR OF INNOVATION
July 29, 2020
Ramaco Carbon announced that former NASA engineer Charles Hill has been hired as the company’s director of innovation. Hill will oversee the company’s “coal-to-products” technology activities, and will be principally based at the company’s Sheridan office.
Hill brings a deep background and experience in composite materials and process engineering to his new position, including 13 years of work with NASA and a decade with the Air Force Research Laboratory. He has also worked with Oak Ridge National Laboratory to develop forms of large-scale additive manufacturing.
STATE APPROVES RAMACO’S MINE APPLICATION, WORK TO BEGIN ON FIRST NEW COAL/CARBON ORE MINE IN NEARLY FOUR DECADES
July 8, 2020
Wyoming environmental regulators have approved Ramaco’s application to construct the state’s first new coal mine in nearly half a century.
Coal from the mine will be used to develop alternative uses for coal beyond burning it, potentially revitalizing a key facet of both the state and the national economy. This also constitutes a permit of one of the largest private coal/carbon ore reserves in the country. The company said pre-mine development work would begin shortly, and that it intends to employ local Wyoming miners affected by the industry’s downturn in the state.
RAMACO FORMS PARTNERSHIP WITH OAK RIDGE NATIONAL LABORATORY, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY’S LARGEST SCIENCE AND ENERGY LAB
June 2, 2020
Ramaco has entered into a partnership with Tennessee-based Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), the nation’s largest U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) science and energy laboratory, to explore innovations for the conversion of coal to high-value advanced carbon products and materials.
The five-year umbrella cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) will allow ORNL and Ramaco Carbon to work together on new projects that use coal as a manufacturing feedstock for carbon fibers, building products and composites, as well as electrodes for energy storage devices and new materials for additive manufacturing, including large-scale 3D printing. The research will be funded by DOE’s Office of Fossil Energy and Ramaco Carbon. Previously, Ramaco Carbon and ORNL collaborated on related research under separate agreements for nearly four years.
NEW POWDER RIVER BASIN MINE INCHES CLOSER TO OPENING
May 14, 2020
Ramaco Carbon is a step closer to opening a new mine in Wyoming despite the resource’s financial woes in the state.
Most thermal coal mined in Wyoming is packed onto trains and sent to power plants, but Ramaco plans to use it as feedstock for research and manufacturing coal products. The prospect of creating strong, lightweight carbon fiber to make products, including vehicles, could lead to a “coal to cars” revolution, Ramaco says.
Read coverage: E&E News
PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD CLOSES FOR BROOK MINE APPLICATION
April 24, 2020
Two months ago, the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality deemed the company’s revised application for a necessary permit technically complete. Since then, the agency has been accepting public comments on the proposed mine.
Over 100 comments flooded the agency by the Thursday deadline, including a large number that voiced emphatic support for the project’s economic promise.
RAMACO RECEIVES MINE APPROVAL FROM WYOMING DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY
March 2, 2020
After a lengthy period of review over almost seven years, local company Ramaco Carbon has received a key approval on its application to mine its private coal assets at the Brook Mine, located in a historic mining area outside Sheridan.
Bjarne Kristiansen, permit coordinator for the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality’s Land Quality Division District 3, informed Ramaco in a written document last week that Brook Mine’s permit application has been deemed technically complete under the Wyoming statutes governing the mine approval process.
WEST VIRGINIA LOOKS AHEAD TO NEW USES FOR CARBON
January 30, 2020
With domestic competition from natural gas and the volatile nature of foreign markets, experts say coal’s future is unpredictable. West Virginia, one of the states most reliant on coal, will soon be home to a research facility to transform coal into carbon products. Ramaco Carbon, a Wyoming-based carbon technology company, will be opening the research facility in Charleston, the state’s capital.
“West Virginia is truly blessed with an abundance of natural resources and our coal is as good and as plentiful as it gets,” Gov. Jim Justice said. “We absolutely need to continue doing all we can to harness the power of coal in every way possible and having this facility to test new ways to convert this dynamic resource is a great opportunity for all.”
RAMACO TO OPEN WV-BASED RESEARCH FACILITY AHEAD OF SCHEDULE
January 26, 2020
Ramaco Carbon plans to have a research facility open in the Charleston area of West Virginia within the next month, according to Chairman and CEO Randall Atkins. The company was highlighted during Gov. Jim Justice’s annual State of the State Address at the start of the legislative session. It has secured a location for its Charleston base of operations in the West Virginia Regional Technology Park.
RAMACO APPOINTS RESEARCH DIRECTOR FOR WYOMING, WEST VIRGINIA FACILITIES
January 22, 2020
Ramaco Carbon has hired Christopher Yurchick to serve as director of research and manage research operations for the company in Sheridan and Charleston, West Virginia. Coming to Ramaco with over a decade of experience working in joint academic/industrial ventures, Yurchick will help spearhead the development of Ramaco’s research facilities. The first research center, called an iCAM, is now under construction in Sheridan County and is scheduled to open this summer. A second research center is planned to be located in West Virginia.
WEST VIRGINIA GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES PARTNERSHIP WITH RAMACO CARBON
January 9, 2020
West Virginia Governor Jim Justice has announced an agreement with Ramaco Carbon to open a new research facility in West Virginia to pursue research related to the use of coal as the precursor for advanced carbon products and materials. “I am excited beyond belief to welcome Ramaco Carbon’s next incredible research facility to our great state. It’s a complete game-changer for us and, really, the entire country,” Justice said during his state-of-the-state address Wednesday.
BILL GATES’ NUCLEAR VENTURE TEAMS UP WITH RAMACO CARBON
November 5, 2019
TerraPower, the venture that’s working on next-generation nuclear reactors with backing from Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, is now working on next-generation uses for coal as well. The privately held company is part of a team that’s receiving more than $1 million in federal funding to develop an emissions-free process to produce carbon fiber from coal. The prime recipient of the funding is Ramaco Carbon — a coal resource, research and carbon manufacturing company that focuses on developing high-value applications for coal that don’t involve its use in power plants.
JUDGE SIDES WITH RAMACO CARBON ON WYOMING MINE PERMIT
October 30, 2019
Under federal law, only the director of the Department of Environmental Quality can decide whether to issue a permit for Ramaco Carbon’s Brook Mine, Laramie County District Judge Catherine Rogers ruled Friday. The decision is in favor of Ramaco Carbon, which aims to open the first new coal mine in Wyoming in over four decades, as feedstock for research and manufacturing efforts around coal-to-products.
MILLIONS IN FEDERAL FUNDING ANNOUNCED FOR RAMACO AND PARTNERS
September 23, 2019
The U.S. Department of Energy announced Ramaco Carbon is the recipient of millions in new federal grants to support the creation of high-value alternative uses for coal in developing both advanced carbon products and advanced materials. Ramaco Carbon is the recipient and a sub-recipient on four cost-shared research and development grants, totaling more than $5 million.
“We hope that this can lead to both a brighter future for the wider coal industry and perhaps even help establish Sheridan, Wyoming as the Carbon Valley nexus for this cutting-edge research,” said Ramaco Carbon CEO Randall Atkins.
EXPERTS TALK COAL-TO-PRODUCT TECH AT RAMACO RESEARCH RODEO v2.0
July 9, 2019
Researchers with expertise in converting coal into innovative advanced materials and products shared their insights with research colleagues from private industry, other national laboratories and academia at the second annual Ramaco Research Rodeo (R3) in Sheridan, Wyoming. In addition to representatives from National Energy Technology Laboratory — a Ramaco partner — R3 participants attended from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Ohio University, the University of Kentucky, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Western Research Institute, the University of Illinois at Chicago and West Virginia University.
COMPANIES LOOK FOR ALTERNATIVE USES FOR COAL
June 13, 2019
Once upon a time, coal helped to usher in a new technological age. So much concentrated energy in such a convenient package helped power the steam engines that drove the Industrial Revolution, transforming the way we live and work. Now, with coal’s future anything but certain, innovators are looking for new uses for the mineral that could fuel a new carbon-based high-tech manufacturing industry…
Travis Deti, executive director of the Wyoming Mining Association, said, “What Ramaco’s doing with carbon fiber, graphene, graphite, 3D printing, that’s a great way to use our resource and make it viable in the future. Is it going to replace the 300 million tons we’re mining right now? Probably not. But it’s an innovative use of the resource and it’s a great project.”
REPORT ON FUTURE OF COAL ISSUED TO U.S. SECRETARY OF ENERGY, CHAIRED BY RAMACO CARBON CEO
May 21, 2019
At the request of U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, the National Coal Council was asked to study innovative new uses for coal beyond power generation. Sheridan-based Ramaco Carbon was asked to spearhead the report’s creation. The report – “Coal in a New Carbon Age: Powering a Wave of Innovation in Advanced Products & Manufacturing” – concludes that coal offers significant potential beyond its current uses as a feedstock to fuel power plants or to produce coke used in making steel.
RAMACO CARBON CEO ELECTED TO SENIOR LEADERSHIP OF NATIONAL COAL COUNCIL
April 25, 2019
Ramaco Carbon CEO Randall Atkins has been elected vice chair of the National Coal Council (NCC) for the remainder of the year and chair-elect for 2020. Atkins was originally appointed to the NCC by U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry in 2017. Atkins also chairs a task force currently drafting a report for Secretary Perry on advanced uses for coal, including manufacturing of many forms of carbon products and materials. The report is titled “Coal in a New Carbon Age: Powering a Wave of Innovation in Advanced Products and Manufacturing,” and is scheduled to be delivered to Perry in June.
COURT UPHOLDS RAMACO’S RIGHT TO MINE COAL AT BROOK MINE
April 22, 2019
Ramaco Carbon’s ability to mine its private coal assets cleared a key hurdle, when a Wyoming District Court Judge in Cheyenne affirmed that the Wyoming Environmental Quality Council was correct to give Ramaco an “order in lieu” of consent over objections from Big Horn Coal, a subsidiary of Utah-based coal mining company Lighthouse Resources and a surface owner to part of Ramaco’s holdings. A “order in lieu” of consent is a provision in Wyoming statutes that allows a state agency to grant consent to a mining applicant’s permit filing when a surface owner is being unreasonable in withholding such consent.
RESEARCH OF DEVELOPING COAL INTO LOW-COST CARBON FIBER ADVANCES
April 2, 2019
A research project led by Western Research Institute, aimed at lowering the cost of carbon fiber for use in the automotive industry, has been approved by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to proceed into the second year of a three-year program. Ramaco Carbon is an industry partner in the project, and part of a coalition that includes University of Wyoming’s Mechanical Engineering Department, researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Oak Ridge National Laboratories. The project was selected under a competitive funding opportunity with the final negotiated project valued at $5.2 million.
RAMACO TALKS COAL-TO-PRODUCTS AT COALTRANS USA CONFERENCE
February 5, 2019
Using coal to create products such as carbon fibers, fertilizers, resins and building materials could create a new source of demand for a fuel struggling to compete in the domestic power market, panelists said at a recent industry event. Ramaco Carbon CEO Randall Atkins said during a Feb. 1 panel at the 19th Coaltrans USA conference in Miami that China uses an estimated 200 million to 300 million tons of coal a year to produce chemicals, and there could be a similar market in the U.S. “I think there’s a fascinating opportunity, not only to help the coal industry from the standpoint of creating the potential for more jobs — because we could basically mine coal for better margins than most of the thermal coal is mined for today for utilities — but also to repurpose a lot of old mines” and revitalize the communities that depended on them, he said.
REINVENTING COAL: R&D MAGAZINE FEATURES REVOLUTIONARY COAL-TO-PRODUCTS RESEARCH BY RAMACO PARTNERS
January 25, 2019
What do carbon fiber, steel, textiles, shampoo, and laundry detergent have in common? They can all be made directly from coal or have their cost and performance improved with additives derived from coal. Innovative work at the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) — a Ramaco Carbon partner — is attempting to expand that list to many other consumer products that are in demand in the global marketplace.
As NETL’s Chris Matranga explains: “We started with a coal feedstock costing about one penny. With just a few hours of processing we converted this penny’s worth of coal into 1 liter of graphene quantum dots in water, which has a current market value of approximately $50,000. The work shows how dramatically coal-based feedstocks will reduce manufacturing costs.”
STANDARD PROCESS REVIEW CONTINUES FOR PROPOSED MINE
January 18, 2019
Standard to all Wyoming state mining permits, and part of the formal review process, is a series of requests by regulators for additional information from the applicant. As part of Brook Mine’s permit application for a small mining operation outside Sheridan, the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality (“DEQ”) has requested additional technical information. The DEQ request focuses on the same environmental safeguards that Ramaco is equally committed to as well.
Read coverage: Sheridan Press
Read more on our Environment page
RAMACO’S PROJECT TEAM DETAILS ITS JOB CREATION IN SHERIDAN AREA
December 20, 2018
In an op-ed for the Sheridan Press, Jeff Barron of WWC Engineering — a lead on Ramaco Carbon’s facility project — details the 59-69 direct jobs Ramaco is creating in the Sheridan area as part of the facility’s construction, not including indirect job creation and employment after the facility opens.
INTERNATIONAL ENERGY AGENCY (IEA) CLEAN COAL CENTRE RECOGNIZES RAMACO EFFORTS IN LATEST REPORT
December 10, 2018
In a report on the non-energy uses of coal, the UK-based IEA Clean Coal Centre flags Ramaco Carbon’s project as a promising development. The report notes Ramaco’s facility would produce carbon fibre and activated carbon initially but has plans to add to the product range as new products emerge, providing a degree of product flexibility to respond to the future demands on the coal industry.
RAMACO TESTIFIES BEFORE WYOMING LEGISLATURE
November 29, 2018
Ramaco’s Director of Operations Ken Woodring testified before the Wyoming Legislative Joint Committee on the company’s strategy and forward progress on its facility construction. He is followed by Don Collins of Western Research Instutute, a Ramaco Carbon partner on coal-to-products research.
Q&A: RAMACO REASSESSES THE VALUE OF COAL
November 19, 2018
In this interview with Argus Media, Ramaco Carbon CEO Randy Atkins discusses the potential for alternative uses for coal as a feedstock that could lower the cost of products like carbon fiber and resin and the macroeconomic benefits to the coal industry of diversifying coal’s uses.
AMERICAN COAL MAGAZINE FEATURES RAMACO CARBON ON FUTURE OF INDUSTRY
November 1, 2018
Ramaco Carbon CEO Randy Atkins was invited to publish a column in American Coal Magazine. The column discusses the future of the industry, the economic potential of coal-to-products, and the implications of the company’s Sheridan project.
RAMACO SUBMITS REVISED MINE APPLICATION
October 19, 2018
Carbon tech company Ramaco Carbon submitted a revised permit application for the Brook Mine, on mineral reserves and land it owns and controls in Sheridan County. The application revises and improves the requested permit with comprehensive environmental and quality of life protections.
Read more on our Environment page
COUNTY APPROVES ICAM RESEARCH CENTER FOR CONSTRUCTION
TEAM RAMACO WINS CHARITY FLY FISHING COMPETITION
September 21, 2018
Local youth angler Brayden Brastrup, his adult angler partner Ken Woodring, and guide Sean Santa took home first prize for the Ramaco Carbon team in Joey’s Fall Fly, a charity fly-fishing tournament held in the Big Horn Mountains. The annual competition is organized by Joey’s Foundation, a Sheridan-based nonprofit that pairs young people with mentors and introduces them to fishing and the outdoors.
REPORT: CARBON TECH COULD SUPPORT 2600 JOBS IN WYOMING
August 13, 2018
Using coal to make graphene, carbon fiber and other products could support 2,600 Wyoming jobs annually, according to a new report from the American Jobs Project. The U.C. Berkeley-based group is a nonpartisan think tank studying job potential in energy transition.
Read coverage: Casper Star-Tribune
AXIOS PROFILES RAMACO CARBON AS ‘LEADING EDGE’ OF NEW COAL INNOVATION
August 13, 2018
Influential DC-based publication Axios profiles Ramaco Carbon, noting that the company “represents the leading edge of what could be a new, high-value market for coal after decades of being America’s cheapest power source.” The article follows testimony by Randy Atkins before a committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, as well as a report noting coal-to-products could create thousands of jobs.
RAMACO, OTHERS MOVE FORWARD WITH EXPANDED RIVER ACCESS ON KLEENBURN
August 17, 2018
Canoes, small drift boats and kayaks will soon have an easier entry point into the Tongue River north of Sheridan. Ramaco Carbon is sponsoring the construction of a new boat ramp at the Kleenburn Recreation Area. Ramaco looked at its property along the Tongue River, talked to adjacent landowners, consulted with a hydrological engineer, applied for its Army Corps of Engineers permit and talked to the Sheridan Community Land Trust before settling on the location for the boat ramp.
Read coverage: Sheridan Press
RAMACO CEO TESTIFIES BEFORE U.S. CONGRESS ON FUTURE OF COAL
July 25, 2018
Ramaco Carbon CEO Randy Atkins spoke before the the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources as part of a hearing titled “Assessing Innovative and Alternative Uses of Coal.” Atkins said Ramaco’s aim is to use the carbon from coal to create various products. Those efforts are focused in four areas: coal to carbon fiber; coal to resins, which will be used in 3-D manufacturing; coal to building products; and coal to medical technology, which will use carbon to create medical sensors.
RAMACO ORGANIZES FIRST “COAL-TO-PRODUCTS” RESEARCH CONFERENCE
July 10-13, 2018
Ramaco Carbon organized three days of meetings and exchange of ideas aimed at promoting the use of coal to create products. The event brought together scientists from around the country to talk about what they’re working on, and how their work might come into play with Ramaco Carbon’s efforts in Sheridan.
Those attending the event include representatives of facilities such as the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, National Energy Technology Laboratory, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the University of Kentucky, Ohio University, the University of Illinois in Chicago, Spruceworks LLC, the University of Wisconsin, the Western Research Institute, Southern Research and Terrapower.
RAMACO FORMS UNIQUE PARTNERSHIP WITH NATIONAL LABORATORY
June 7, 2018
The U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory has joined forces with Wyoming-based Ramaco Carbon to develop what could become a new coal-based feed stock for valuable consumer products. The organizations have signed a umbrella cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA), allowing them to work together on specific projects.
Read coverage: WV State Journal
COUNTY APPROVES REZONE OF RAMACO PROPERTY
March 6, 2018
Sheridan County commissioners voted to approve the rezone of about 114 acres of Ramaco’s privately-owned lands north of Sheridan from agricultural to industrial, allowing the company to move forward with its plan to build manufacturing and research facilities on the land. In a statement, CEO Randy Atkins said, “We humbly extend our sincere thanks to the Sheridan community. … We look forward to rapidly moving ahead with iPark and iCam as positive additions to the community and to Wyoming overall.”
RAMACO ANNOUNCES PRODUCTION PARTNERSHIP WITH CARBON3D, INC.
November 8, 2017
Ramaco Carbon announced a production partnership agreement with Carbon, a Silicon Valley-based 3D manufacturing company. Under the agreement, Ramaco Carbon will produce a variety of products and component parts for third parties using Carbon’s 3D printers. These components will be manufactured at Ramaco’s Wyoming iPark industrial facility outside of Sheridan.
BLOOMBERG PROFILES RAMACO CARBON, RESEARCH PARTNERS ON FUTURE OF COAL
September 13, 2017
National outlet Bloomberg profiles the novel research being conducted to turn coal into valuable products, such as carbon fiber and electrical conduits. The article features Ramaco research partners at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and more, and notes the company’s facility will facilitate the creation of new research and intellectual property.
‘COAL TO CARS’? COMPANY BETS THAT COULD BE A THING
July 31, 2017
The company behind what could be Wyoming’s first new coal mine in years has bet big on the black rocks — but not for generating electricity. Ramaco Carbon LLC’s is on its way to building the Brook mine between Sheridan, Wyo., and the Montana border.
The strip mine would be just phase one of a plan that includes a research laboratory and industrial park in the Tongue River Valley. It would be an entire complex dedicated to the idea of turning coal into carbon fiber — a stronger, lighter alternative to metals like steel and aluminum for use in manufacturing.