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Conference Proceedings

Australian Mine Ventilation Conference 2017

Conference Proceedings

Australian Mine Ventilation Conference 2017

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Mine dust monitoring past and present

*This is an abstract only. No full paper is available for this abstract.* Accurate monitoring of mine dust levels continues to be essential for maintaining the health and well-being of miners. The history of the development of coalmine dust instrumentation and monitoring methods provides increased understanding into the nuances, difficulties, and challenges that we continue to face to properly assess human exposure to mine dusts. The large volume of past research into mine dust monitoring and control is a prime indicator of the difficulties that may be encountered.Various technologies have been developed in the attempt to monitor mine dust. From early microscopic counting techniques to todays established metric of mass measurement, much work has been done to arrive at this point. Many technologies have tried to establish a correlation with the actual dust mass concentrations but have had variable success. Numerous analytical methods have also been developed to determine the components of highly variable dust compositions. Dust size distributions that span several orders of magnitude have added considerable complexity to measurements. The airborne dust size, the size fraction of dust that enters human lungs, and our ability to size select the fraction of dust that our instruments measure have complex interactions. Add to this the variability of human physiology and its response to dusts and we gain a glimpse of our challenge to keep miners healthy. Today we have a far better understanding of these complex interactions to enable more accurate measurements of exposures. Furthermore, the development of real-time instrumentation has provided a powerful new tool to empower miners and their companies to prevent overexposures.This presentation will review some of the historic highlights that have brought us to this point. The focus will be on instrumentation and perhaps more importantly the appropriate application of instruments that are necessary to achieve safe health outcomes for miners.CITATION:Volkwein, J C, 2017. Mine dust monitoring past and present, in Proceedings Australian Mine Vent Conference 2017, pp 11-12 (The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy: Melbourne).
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  • Published: 2016
  • PDF Size: 0.048 Mb.
  • Unique ID: P201704003

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