Despite its shortcomings, fossil-based fuels are still utilized as the main energy source, accounting for about 80% of the world's total energy supply with about one-third of which comes from coal. However, conventional coal-fired power plants emit relatively higher amounts of greenhouse gases, and the derivatives of air pollutants, which necessitates the integration of environmentally benign technologies into the conventional power plants. In the current study, a H-2-CO synthesis gas fueled solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) is integrated to the coal-fired combined cycle along with a concentrated solar energy system for the purpose of promoting the cleaner energy applications in the fossil fuel-based power plants. The underlying motivation of the present study is to propose a novel design for a conventional coal-fired combined cycle without altering its main infrastructure to make its environmentally hazardous nature more ecofriendly. The proposed SOFC integrated coal-fired combined cycle is modeled thermodynamically for different types of coals, namely pet coke, Powder River Basin (PRB) coal, lignite and anthracite using the Engineering Equation Solver (EES) and the Ebsilon software packages. The current results show that the designed hybrid energy system provide higher performance with higher energy and exergy efficiencies ranging from 70.6% to 72.7% energetically and from 35.5% to 43.8% exergetically. In addition, carbon dioxide emissions are reduced varying between 18.31 kg/s and 30.09 kg/s depending on the selected coal type, under the assumption of 10 kg per second fuel inlet. (C) 2021 Hydrogen Energy Publications LLC. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.