Conveyor Belt Dust Management Tips
Any time you move dry material with a conveyor, there’s going to be some degree of airborne dust that will move around the air currents and land around the jobsite. This tends to happen most frequently at conveyor transports, where materials are loaded, unloaded or transported in such a manner that the dust is disturbed and then carried away from the system.
With the use of an effective sealing system, an engineered transfer system and a dust-suppression and/or -collection system, you can significantly reduce dust emissions at your jobsite.
There are several considerations and tips you should keep in mind when aiming to better manage the dust that arises at your conveyor site. The most important thing you should focus on is minimizing the amount of dust that’s being created.
It is unlikely you will ever be able to eliminate dust, but there are changes you can make in production techniques or system designs that can at least cut down on the amount of dust produced.
Here are a few examples of methods you can implement to reduce the amount of dust created through better engineering:
- Shorten your drops between conveyors: By reducing the drops that exist between conveyors, you reduce the energy released by the falling stream of material at the impact area. This means less energy imparted to the material and fewer dust particles created or driven off as a result. Make sure to design conveyor systems with small material drop distances whenever possible.
- Align material loading with the direction of the belt: Always set up your system so the material is loaded in the same direction the belt is traveling. If the loading occurs in an opposite direction, this means there is an increased amount of energy and resistance that will cause more dust to form or blow off. Aligning the material loading with the belt direction makes for smoother loading and less dust creation.
- Avoid drastic changes in the trajectory of the material: Avoid sharp turns or sudden rises or drops; try to keep the entire path of the material as smooth as possible. This will help avoid excess dust creation and also prevent potential accidents from materials spilling and falling off the conveyor.
- Maintain a cohesive material stream and air control: Do whatever you can to control the flow of air into and out of the transfer point while maintaining cohesive material streams. If there’s too much airflow in and out of the transfer area, this could cause more dust to form and blow around, which can be challenging to deal with and clean up.
These are just a few examples of some of the improvements and ideas you can implement in a conveyor system to reduce dust spread as much as possible. For more information about some dust management and collection tips and what else you can do to improve your belt conveyor management, we encourage you to get in touch with the team at M.B. McKee Company, Inc. today.
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