"Dust" is a collective term for all sorts of airborne solid particles. These are found everywhere and can only be completely avoided with great technological effort. Chemically, dust is mainly composed of different organic and inorganic compounds. Machining processes such as grinding, polishing or deburring normally create large amounts of coarse particles. Fine dust, meanwhile, occurs in material processing industries during brazing, welding, milling and when working with lasers but also in print shops with their ink particles and paper dusts.
Characteristics of fine and coarse dusts
In terms of health hazards, dust is classified by its particle size: there is coarse dust, inhalable dust and fine dust, which penetrates deeply into the pulmonary alveoli. The smaller the dust particles, the more hazardous the dust, because it easily enters the lungs. The behaviour of ultrafine dusts (< 0.1 µm, nanoparticles) and their associated health hazards are still widely unknown.
Depending on their chemical composition, inhaled fine dusts may cause asthma, bronchitis, lung cancer and several other diseases.
Requirements of dust extraction systems
In many cases, those hazards can be prevented by using suitable extraction systems to clean the air we breathe of harmful substances. In sectors where abrasion creates small particles which incur the risk of dust explosions (mills or stone and wood processing), dusts are a major issue for health and safety at work. Rules for protection against dust explosions can be found in the regulations of the German Social Accident Insurance (Deutsche Gesetzliche Unfallversicherung, DGUV).
To find the perfect extraction and filtering system, not only the nature of the dust particles, but also their concentration and the air volume to be extracted has to be determined. Then the most suitable unit and the respective equipment is chosen. From small extraction and filtering units to fully automated hall ventilation systems, NOVUS offers the best solution for optimal extraction results.