January 31, 2020

Combustible Dust ManagementThis is too serious a subject to just say combustible dust is dust that can explode when suspended in the air. Yes, that’s true, but at XP Products, we want to dive much deeper into the topic and provide useful information that can help prevent dust explosions.


There are various types of combustible dust, and the one thing they all have in common is that they are all exceedingly fine. The main sources are organic materials such as wood, flour, sugar, grain, and cornstarch, and metallic dust that comes from aluminum, zinc, and bronze, for example. Non-metallic inorganic dust comes from material such as plastic or rubber.


The risk arises when the dust is left unchecked and builds up across a facility. When this dust is disturbed, it gets suspended in the air. At that point, a very small source of ignition can trigger an initial explosion that leads to a greater secondary explosion.


There are many examples of dust explosions that cost workers their lives. A dust explosion and subsequent fire at a sugar refinery in Georgia killed 14, and a polyethylene dust explosion killed six at a plant in North Carolina.


Explosions at facilities that generate dust are not inevitable. They are preventable through a dust hazard analysis or DHA. An analysis is very effective in identifying problem areas and providing solutions to prevent explosions from occurring.

Contact us today to discuss your NFPA compliant dust collection needs.

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