Dust control and its benefits
Dust control is a vital element in meeting safety, health and environmental requirements. Dust control systems not only help reduce site emissions but also help protect employees. Dust produced by material processing operations and mining is a major source of airborne fumes and dust. Dust produced during mining, construction and on unpaved roads is a leading contributor to environmental pollution (specifically air pollution).
For instance, besides being an explosion hazard especially when dispersed in air, coal dust is quite hazardous mainly because it is a leading cause of black lung disease among miners on the other hand, dust produced from sand, gravel and stone processing causes silicosis.
Dust control systems mainly suppress and collect dust and fumes produced by industrial processes such as cement manufacture, mining and steel production.
Types of dust collection systems
There are two main types of dust collection solutions:
1. Dry collection
Dry dust collection involves the use of bag houses equipped with fabric filters. The fabric filters vacuum dust from the source to a hopper for proper disposal.
2. Wet suppression
Wet dust suppression is the use of water sprays, water guns, and mists to control fugitive dust on piles, roads, and processing operations. The most common wet suppression technology is water spray systems which are mainly used to control industrial and mining facilities in compliance with federal and state laws implemented to regulate dust emission. In order to improve performance, most wet dust control systems use foams and surfactants. This is mainly for materials that require specialized application such as petroleum coke and coal which are quite difficult to wet. This method is a bit complex since water contact angles, droplets size, impact velocity and surface tension all have a part to play.
Airborne dust capture is a less common method of controlling dust.
Industries that apply dust control systems:
- Steel and iron mills.
- Open cut and underground mines.
- Power plants, coal terminals, airstrips, quarries, and railroads.
- Shipping and grain terminals
- The military and other government agencies.
However, the application of dust control systems is not limited to these industries.
The benefits include:
- Reduces the risk of fire and dust explosion.
- Enhances safety: Increases visibility at the work place.
- Dust suppression prevents unpleasant odors.
- Reduces site maintenance and cleaning costs.
- Reduces equipment wear hence saving money.
- A healthier workplace helps boost employees' morale.
- Reduces waste of valuable materials.
It's a form of compliance with environmental and workplace legislation.
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Jan Petruzalek, firstname.lastname@example.org, +420 416 711 357, +420 606 782 096.