Combustible Dust Applications

OSHA figures show decades of increased dust explosion incidents in many industries.  The wood industry has 24% of these events, food industry has 23%, metals account for 20%, plastics 14% and the power industry (coal) 8%.  A dust explosion requires combustible dust, an ignition source, oxygen, dispersed dust particles and confinement of the dust cloud.  Generally, the initial explosion dislodges other accumulated dust and there is a secondary explosion.  Any industry that reduces materials to a “finely divided state” presents a potential for fire or explosions.

Vigilant housekeeping is key to preventing the propagation of explosive events.  In many cases, there is clear evidence of a problem and steps can be taken to mitigate the situation.  The first defense is trained employees who know to identify and report potential hazards.  After confirming a hot spot exists, it must be located.  At this time, a properly trained team with a piercing rod can inject F-500 EA into the hot spot and reduce the temperature and eliminate the hazard.

A list of common combustible dusts identified by OSHA is shown below:

Coal Dust Flash Fires