Dust suppression equipment in combination with binders is the best solution for trafficked surfaces, since binders contribute to surface stability.

If surfaces are not stabilized, deformations will form and degradation of the road material will occur. This will result in decreased driving safety and higher maintenance costs.

The following factors must be considered in choosing appropriate dust suppression equipment:

  • Source of dust (e.g.: coal, ore, soil);
  • Type of operation generating the dust;
  • Physical location of dust source (e.g.: underground or above ground, enclosed or exposed areas, etc); and
  • Available utilities and resources (e.g.: electricity, compressed air, water, labour)

There are four basic kinds of dust suppression equipment available:

  • Enclosures (limiting dust movement);
  • Vacuum systems (dust collection);
  • Wet systems (water sprays to prevent dust generation);
  • Combination of these techniques.

Enclosures and vacuum systems are effective where the generation of dust is from a concentrated source, such as in woodshops. Where dust sources may emanate from larger areas, such as an unpaved road, such enclosure/vacuum systems are too expensive as a dust control solution. There are also cases where the prevention of dust generation is preferred or necessary, and in these cases, enclosures and vacuum systems are un-viable.  Again, this would be the case on an unsurfaced trafficked area.

In such an application, the only effective dust suppression equipment is a wet system, which functions to prevent dust generation and propagation. Water can be used in combination with various chemical additives to produce different results. Wet spraying is also effective to control dust arising from piled loose material, be it a stockpile or the transportation of uncovered materials.

Where dust is mitigated with the spraying of water, it is imperative to understand that treated surfaces/materials will respond to moisture differently. The volume of water sprayed to suppress dust must also be optimized. Too little moisture means dust is still generated. Too much moisture means that the material quality may be compromised. This is evident in case of road material, as well as in case of piled materials.

The material type also determines whether chemicals should and can be added to the water in dust suppression equipment to improve suppression performance and reduce application costs. Coal for example repels water and thus chemical additives are usually required to facilitate absorption.

When water alone is used, large volumes of water are required to prevent dust and overwetting is a common problem. Since water evaporates quickly, reapplications are needed frequently. Therefore, to decrease water consumption, considering the type of suppressant used is also important.

Adding surfactants to water allows better interaction between the water and certain types of dust that resist absorption. However, not all materials can tolerate surfactants and may be contaminated as a result of their addition. The advantage of foam systems is the decreased need for of water, although they usually require the availability of compressed air. Foams may also contaminate the treated material. Binders function as to agglomerate particles together after the moisture evaporates.

Dust suppression equipment in combination with binders is the best solution for trafficked surfaces, since binders contribute to surface stability. If surfaces are not stabilized, deformations will form and degradation of the road material will occur. This will result in decreased driving safety and higher maintenance costs.

Dust Suppression Equipment

Global Road Technology (GRT) specializes in the production, supply and application of dust suppression products. GRT suppressants act by binding road material particles into a waterproof matrix. The result is a non-dusty, flat, stable and non-slippery surface. Water consumption is greatly decreased and maintenance costs are largely reduced when GRT suppressants are applied instead of traditional products.  A comparative analysis was performed on a 10km trial. The traditional watering method was compared to the application of GRT products. Using GRT’s products, the project lasted 3 months and a 40% saving was yielded. Besides significant financial savings, GRT technology reduces water consumption by 99.67%. Transportation and treatment operations were also largely reduced.

GRT5000 is liquid polymer that provides a surface coating for dust suppression and is applicable especially on stockpiled materials. This product also has a range of applications in the resources, commercial, civil and government sectors. Independently performed tests confirmed the successful suppression of up to 95% of dust particles. GRT5000 can be applied directly to raw materials using dust control spray technology. For example, in the coal industry, the product prevents the loss of materials whilst not altering the burning properties of coal. GRT5000 provides long life protection across wet and dry climates and temperature extremes

For more information on Global Road Technology please contact GRT.