Mining Publication: Field Assessment of Retrofitting Surface Coal Mine Equipment Cabs with Air Filtration Systems
Operator cabs on a front-end loader and a rotary rock drill were retrofitted with ceiling mounted heating/AC units and air filtration systems. Subsequently, surface coal mine field studies were conducted to evaluate the respirable dust protection these retrofitted cab systems offer to the equipment operator. A significant 10:1 respirable dust protection factor (ratio of outside to inside cab dust levels) was measured for the front-end loader cab with positive pressurization of the cab interior. Whereas an insignificant 3:1 respirable dust protection factor was measured for the drill cab without positive pressurization of the cab interior. These results indicate that achieving positive interior cab pressurization with retrofitted cab filtration systems is a key element in their dust control effectiveness.