Mining Publication: Technology News 463 - Machine-Mounted Continuous Respirable Dust Monitor
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has developed a machine-mounted continuous respirable dust monitor (MMCRDM) (figure 1) based on the tapered-element oscillating microbalance (TEOM) sensing technology. The sensor can be mounted on mobile mining equipment and can continuously and accurately measure respirable coal mine dust mass concentrations despite the rigors of the underground mine environment. Readings of dust levels are stored in computer memory and displayed to the machine operator. The display shows dust levels averaged over various intervals and a graph of the shift average as a function of time. The monitor also incorporates several automatic diagnostic functions to detect system failure or tampering. Such a monitor will enable mine operators and regulatory personnel to identify specific mining practices that expose mine workers to excessive dust levels. Using information provided by the monitor, mine personnel can optimize mining procedures to reduce dust exposure to miners.