Metallurgical coke should have following characteristics:
1. Purity: low amounts of moisture, ash, sulphur & phosphorous should be present.
2. Porosity: it should be porous so that oxygen comes in contact with coke and complete combustion takes place.
3. Apparent density: it should be high. It should be high.
4. Strength and hardness: it should have high strength and hardness to withstand heavy loads in furnace.
5. Calorific value: it should be high.
6. Size: it should not be so big or so small. It should have a uniform size. If it is too small it may cause choking and if the size is very big uniform heating is not possible.
7. Combustibility: coke should burn quickly i.e., it should have high combustibility.
8. Reactivity: the coke may be reactive to steam, air or CO2. With the increase in reaction temperature, the reactivity towards steam increases. Whereas the reactivity towards steam decreases with increase in carbonisation temperature. High reactivity towards steam is necessary for manufacture of water gas. Coke from non-caking coals is more reactive to steam than the coke from caking coal.
9. It should be of low cost.