A well-designed CFBC can burn coal with high efficiency and within acceptable levels of gaseous emission. In this theoretical study effects of operational parameters on combustion efficiency and the pollutants emitted have been estimated using a developed dynamic 2D (tow-dimensional) model for CFBCs. Model simulations have been carried out to examine the effect of different operational parameters such as excess air and gas inlet pressure and coal particle size on bed temperature, the overall CO, NO(x) and SO(2) emissions and combustion efficiency from a small-scale CFBC. It has been observed that increasing excess air ratio causes fluidized bed temperature decrease and CO emission increase. Coal particle size has more significant effect on CO emissions than the gas inlet pressure all the entrance to fluidized bed. Increasing excess air ratio leads to decreasing SO(2) and NO(x) emissions. The gas inlet pressure at the entrance to fluidized bed has a more significant effect on NO(x) emission than the coal particle size. Increasing excess air causes decreasing combustion efficiency. The gas inlet pressure has more pronounced effect on combustion efficiency than the coal particle size, particularly at higher excess air ratios. The developed model is also validated in terms of combustion efficiency with experimental literature data obtained from 300 kW laboratory scale test unit. The present theoretical study also confirms that CFB combustion allows clean and efficient combustion of coal. (C) 2008 Taiwan Institute of Chemical Engineers. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.